How do I get started?

This article introduces you to DreamHost’s most important services that you need to set up your website. While this doesn't cover everything, it does cover the basics and it’s a good place to start after you purchase an account.

The standard hosting plans are 'Shared, VPS, and Dedicated'. DreamHost also offers specialized plans called DreamPress (WordPress hosting) and Remixer (simple website builder).

Creating a DreamHost account

If you wish to use any DreamHost services, you must create an account. View the following article for instructions on how to open an account.

Logging into the panel

Once you finish the signup process, you’ll receive a message to notify you that your account is set up. From there, you can log in to the panel at:

To log in, use the credentials within the email that was sent to you.

Setting up your domain

Once you log in to your panel, there are a few things you must do to set up your website. For example:

Registering a domain

To load any web page, the owner must first own the registration of the domain name. If you do not own the registration, you have no right to use the domain name.

To register a domain, go to the (Panel > ‘Domains’ > ‘Registrations’) page.

On the Registrations page, you can register any domain you wish that is still available:

DreamHost allows the registration of many different Top Level Domains (TLDs). You can view a full list of these on the Registrations page by clicking the ‘See full pricing’ link.

For further information, please review the Domain Registration article.

Adding a hosting plan

After you purchase a registration, you must then add the domain to your panel as FULLY HOSTED in order for it to resolve online.

To add a hosting plan to your account, go to the (Panel > ‘Billing & Account’ > ‘Manage Account’) page.

On the Manage Account page, you’ll see a section titled ‘Service Plans’:
02 Getting Started.fw.png

If you already added a plan, you’ll see it listed here. In this example, a ‘Shared’ hosting plan has been added which is paid upfront at $119.40 for the entire year.

Adding hosting to a domain

After you add a hosting plan, you can now add hosting to your website.

To add hosting,

  1. Go to (Panel > ‘Domains’ > ‘Manage Domains’) page.
  2. Click the Add Hosting to a Domain / Sub-Domain button.
    The ‘Manage Domains’ page opens and displays with the following options:
    • Fully Hosted: Configures the site to be hosted at DreamHost. Most often, this is the option you'll choose.
    • Redirect: Forwards visitors to your site to another website.
    • Mirrored: Allows your site to use the same files as another site as long as it is Fully Hosted and on the same DreamHost account.
    • Parked: Displays a placeholder with a DreamHost “coming soon” message.
    • Cloaked: Displays another site of your choice with a modified display URL and browser title.
    • DNS Only: Creates custom DNS records that point your domain away from DreamHost. This is unavailable for subdomains.

Even if you set a site to be FULLY HOSTED in your panel, that still does not mean it’s hosted at DreamHost. Your DNS records must also point to your DreamHost server. The company that hosts your Nameservers controls your DNS. You can check where the nameservers are pointed by looking up your public WHOIS information here:

If the nameservers are set to DreamHost already, then all you need to do is set up hosting. View the following articles for further information:

Creating an email address

Once you add hosting to a domain, you can then create an email address(es).

To create an email address:

  1. Go to the (Panel > ‘Mail’ > ‘Manage Email’) page.
  2. Click the Create New Email Address button at the top.
    You’ll then be able to enter a new email and a password.

Once you save the changes, the necessary DNS records for mail are added to your site’s DNS.

More information can be found at Email Setup regarding the creation and configuration of email accounts with DreamHost.

It is also possible to host your email outside of DreamHost. To host elsewhere, you can configure custom MX records to point to your external mail host. Visit the MX record article for further instructions.

DreamPress Hosting

If you’re planning on hosting a WordPress site, DreamHost also offers DreamPress. DreamPress is a per-domain hosting service in which a user’s WordPress site is placed on two managed and scalable private servers with improved caching and memory.

More information on the service could be found here:

Remixer hosting

DreamHost offers a custom website builder called 'Remixer' that requires no coding experience. Remixer is a hosting service that is separate from Shared, VPS, Dedicated, or DreamPress hosting. View the following links for further details:

Contacting support

If there’s anything support may assist you with regarding setting up and loading your website, feel free to submit a support ticket on the (Panel > ‘Support’ > ‘Contact Support’) page of your panel.

See also

Did this article answer your questions?

Article last updated PST.