A2 Hosting vs. DreamHost (2019)

Alexandra Leslie Alexandra Leslie Hosting Expert
“We tested A2 Hosting & DreamHost — The winner is A2 Hosting!”

Two high-performance hosting providers, A2 Hosting and DreamHost are closely matched, fine-tuned race cars hurtling toward fast page loads, flexible scalability, and superior support. Both hosting engines are equipped with solid-state hard drives and are fueled by an unlimited supply of storage and bandwidth. DreamHost particularly specializes in WordPress hosting, while A2 Hosting takes a broader approach to premium infrastructure. The finish line is nearing in this web hosting drag race… Which one do you think will win?

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Overall Rating
4.9/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit A2 Hosting »
Overall Rating
4.8/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit DreamHost »

Overall Hosting Comparison

Best Overall Rating

★★★★★ 4.9/5.0

If speed and performance, partnered with support and security, are at all priorities in your web host shopping, A2 Hosting should be a leading contender. ... read more +

If speed and performance, partnered with support and security, are at all priorities in your web host shopping, A2 Hosting should be a leading contender.

When A2 Hosting first launched in 2003, the company was focused on serving developers; A2 Hosting was among the first providers to offer PHP 5 and to support Ruby on Rails on shared servers. As the company grew, the focus shifted toward performance, following a customer survey that revealed loading times trailed only support and reliability as top priorities.

As such, A2 Hosting was also one of the first to offer hosting with high-speed solid-state drives, which now reside across the company's entire portfolio of services. A2 Hosting's full-stack optimizations unlocked a 300% increase in page load speeds

The company took performance yet another step forward when it launched its Turbo hosting platform, which boasts fewer users per server, pre-configured caching options, and twice the allocated physical memory.  With the Turbo Server option, caching tools, and other optimized software, sites experience page loads speeds up to 20 times faster than average.

Whether you want a dedicated server, standard shared hosting with cPanel, VPS, or anything in between, A2 Hosting can offer the services to meet your needs. With expertly-tuned servers that house fewer accounts, the company promises uptimes of 99.9% or higher, with Guru Crew customer support available all day, every day.

Overall, you can't go wrong in choosing A2 Hosting as your web host. The company's inventive hosting solutions, impressive performance and security measures, and the constant thought put into the user experience warrant our high praise for their services.

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  • SSDs and Turbo Server for up to 20x faster pageloads
  • Host unlimited websites and enjoy FREE site transfer
  • A2-optimized plugins and 1-click installs for WordPress
  • A2-optimized caching with OPcache and Memcached
  • FREE HackScan with restore options
  • Get started on A2 Hosting now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
Unlimited SSD
Domain Name
New or Transfer

Best Overall Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

A top-notch host for those who know what they're looking for, DreamHost offers nuanced and performant hosting perfect for scaling websites and applications through the ranks of shared, VPS, cloud, and... read more +

A top-notch host for those who know what they're looking for, DreamHost offers nuanced and performant hosting perfect for scaling websites and applications through the ranks of shared, VPS, cloud, and dedicated hosting.

We love the company's features but realize that beginners or hobbyist developers might not want to fork over the extra cash to capitalize on the performance, optimization, and managed services that DreamHost offers.

If, however, your site is growing and gathering more and more traffic, few hosts will take care of you as well as DreamHost. Managed services include infrastructure management, automatic backups and updates, malware scans, and DDoS protection.

We appreciate how the independently owned company was built on a passion for open-source technologies. DreamHost developers routinely contribute code back to communities, such as WordPress and OpenStack, and the company has used their brainpower and experience to create the open-source storage system Ceph and OpenStack cloud network virtualization tool Akanda.

As such, DreamHost support agents know what they're talking about. Available all day, every day, the in-house support team provides help worthy of DreamHost's speedy SSD-based architecture, hand-crafted control panel, WordPress-tailored solutions, and reliable managed services.

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  • Unlimited traffic, storage, websites, and email addresses
  • US-based customer support available around the clock
  • 200% faster performance with solid-state drives
  • Receive one day of free service for every hour of downtime
  • Industry-leading 97-day money-back guarantee
  • Get started on DreamHost now.
Money Back Guarantee
97 days
Disk Space
Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

Cheap Hosting Comparison

Cheap Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

#5 out of 10 in Cheap Hosting reviews

There are plenty of excellent cPanel shared hosting providers out there, so what sets A2 Hosting apart from the rest? Not only does the company offer a ton of features, but it has custom-built its packages... read more +

There are plenty of excellent cPanel shared hosting providers out there, so what sets A2 Hosting apart from the rest? Not only does the company offer a ton of features, but it has custom-built its packages for enhanced performance, speed, and security — putting your priorities above pricing.

A2 Hosting packages include a free Cloudflare content delivery network, 24/7 Guru Crew support, and multiple SSD speed boost solutions. Within the comfortable cPanel control panel, users will find Softaculous — featuring easy, 1-click installations of popular web applications.

With A2's Perpetual Security features, users receive free HackScan protection and KernelCare, which runs rebootless auto-updates to kernels daily. The company promises 99.9% uptime and 24/7 network monitoring, plus virus scanning and defense against brute-force attacks.

Not only was A2 Hosting one of the first to offer SSD hosting — featuring three times the page load speeds of standard hosts — but the company also invented its own Turbo hosting platform. A2 Hosting's Turbo Servers yield 20 times faster page load speeds, using less CPU and memory, with fewer users on each server.

We appreciate how A2 Hosting spends a great deal of time and effort on performance testing and ensuring its giving customers the best speed, security, and support available at a price users can afford. The highly optimized solutions make getting started easy, and the usefulness and reliability of A2 Hosting's products make them extremely cost-effective. With 24/7 support, including a WordPress-specific department, we're confident A2 Hosting can provide the assistance you need to get an affordable site launched and thriving.

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  • FREE Cloudflare CDN and SSD speed boost solution
  • A2-optimized caching and 1-click CMS installs
  • Up to unlimited email addresses, domains, and databases
  • Advanced security features and FREE HackScan
  • 24/7/365 Guru Crew support via phone, chat, and tickets
  • Get started on A2 Hosting now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
Unlimited SSD
Domain Name
New or Transfer

Cheap Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

While DreamHost's price might be a little steep compared to other high-value hosting providers, the company gives customers ample time and reasons to get hooked and stick around. The company, which started... read more +

While DreamHost's price might be a little steep compared to other high-value hosting providers, the company gives customers ample time and reasons to get hooked and stick around. The company, which started in the founders' dorm room in 1997, offers an industry-leading 97-day money-back guarantee. Additionally, DreamHost guarantees 100% uptime and will reimburse customers the cost of a whole day of hosting for each hour of downtime outside of scheduled maintenance.

We love that DreamHost seems to be genuinely built with their customers' experience and success in mind. Beyond unlimited storage and bandwidth, the company's luxurious shared hosting package boasts high-performance SSDs that make your websites perform at least 20 times faster. Customers can also enjoy unlimited domain hosting, free domain privacy on sites registered through DreamHost, and unlimited email accounts.

We found that DreamHost's hand-crafted control panel gives easy access to all the tools beginners need to start and grow their sites: 1-click installers of top content management systems and eCommerce tools, SSL/TLS certificates from Let's Encrypt, and automated malware scans.

The company's award-winning support and service teams are staffed by self-described tech veterans, geeks, and nerds who are trained to Tier II to provide the most knowledgeable and experienced assistance. If the extensive knowledgebase and user forums don't solve your problems, you can reach the in-house support team around the clock through phone callbacks, email tickets, Twitter, and live chat.

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  • Automated malware scans
  • Unlimited domain hosting
  • Unlimited email accounts with POP/IMAP/SMTP
  • FREE eCommerce store tools and PCI compliance
  • Streamlined proprietary control panel
  • Get started on DreamHost now.
Money Back Guarantee
97 days
Disk Space
Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

Dedicated Hosting Comparison

Dedicated Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

#3 out of 10 in Dedicated Hosting reviews

Whether you're looking for managed or self-managed hosting, A2 Hosting offers three extremely reliable dedicated server plans to meet your needs, depending on your levels of comfort and experience. ... read more +

Whether you're looking for managed or self-managed hosting, A2 Hosting offers three extremely reliable dedicated server plans to meet your needs, depending on your levels of comfort and experience.

With A2 Hosting's Unmanaged Flex Dedicated Server plan, users get administrator-level control with root access and their choice of Linux operating system. Your server will be ready for configuration with an optional cPanel license available. Plus, the company offers 24/7/365 server monitoring and maintenance for hardware. We found this package to be most useful for experienced developers who are familiar with the command line.

The Managed Flex Dedicated Server service removes the operating system choice and root access — along with any of the hassle or stress of server maintenance and management. Blending the best of both worlds, A2 Hosting also offers a managed server with root access as part of its Core Dedicated Server plan.

A2 Hosting's dedicated servers feature its proprietary SwiftServer platform — expertly-tuned hardware with performance enhancements. The company was one of the first to offer SSD hosting, a perk passed down to all dedicated server customers that unlocks page load speeds as much as three times faster than those of standard web hosts.

Servers are never overloaded, and A2 notifies you of targeted server occurrences, such as high load volume or when a filesystem becomes full. With four datacenters strategically located on three continents, A2 Hosting offers high redundancy and global distribution.

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  • Root access available with 3 levels of server management
  • Expertly-tuned servers deployed in 30 minutes or less
  • Choose from 4 datacenters spread across 3 continents
  • FREE redundant SSD storage in RAID-1 arrays
  • Choice of 13 Linux operating systems
  • Get started on A2 Hosting now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
256 GB SSD - 8 TB HDD
Domain Name
New or Transfer

Dedicated Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

When your high-traffic site outgrows VPS, turn to DreamHost for premium dedicated hosting at a reasonable rate. The 20-year-old hosting provider offers servers with three times more cores and four times... read more +

When your high-traffic site outgrows VPS, turn to DreamHost for premium dedicated hosting at a reasonable rate. The 20-year-old hosting provider offers servers with three times more cores and four times more RAM compared to well-known competitors. What's more, DreamHost includes up to 2TB of SSD storage, unlimited bandwidth, and a 100% uptime guarantee.

All dedicated servers come with full root and shell access, along with DDoS protection, RAID-1 storage, and unlimited MySQL databases. With DreamHost's custom control panel, customers can quickly add, remove, or reboot servers with just a few clicks.

We appreciate that DreamHost prides itself on providing open-source solutions, contributing to and supporting developer communities, and maintaining expert-level support teams. In addition to running Ubuntu Long Term support, DreamHost supports PHP, Perl, Python, and Ruby.

DreamHost has datacenters on both coasts and offers integration with the Cloudflare content delivery network, making sure your content loads quickly, no matter where your traffic comes from.

DreamHost's newest facility, dubbed "Data Center Alley," includes 2N+2 power redundancy and dual water lines for redundant cooling. Around-the-clock staffing, a 1Gbps internet connection, and emergency generators can give dedicated hosting customers peace of mind that their sites will stay online for the long haul.

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  • Up to 12 cores available
  • Full root and shell access
  • DDoS protection and 24/7 server monitoring
  • Fully managed and customizable hardware options
  • RAID-1 HDD or SSD storage
  • Get started on DreamHost now.
Money Back Guarantee
N/A
Disk Space
240 GB SSD - 2 TB HDD
Domain Name
New or Transfer

VPS Hosting Comparison

VPS Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

#6 out of 9 in VPS Hosting reviews

While A2 Hosting's turbocharged shared hosting platform gives site owners ample room to grow, the company's tech prowess is on full display with its portfolio of VPS options. Ranging from unmanaged,... read more +

While A2 Hosting's turbocharged shared hosting platform gives site owners ample room to grow, the company's tech prowess is on full display with its portfolio of VPS options. Ranging from unmanaged, bare-metal environments to stress-free, fully managed space, A2 Hosting is sure to have the perfect option for your expanding online presence.

No matter which option customers choose — and there are many — A2 Hosting allocates ample storage, bandwidth, and memory to VPS customers. Site owners or app developers can customize their hosting package to include root access, cPanel, or high-performance solid-state disks.

We highly recommend the company's Core VPS packages, which combine managed services with root access to provide the best of both worlds. The configurations start with a whopping 4GB of RAM, 4vCPUs, 75GB of SSD storage, all well above average elsewhere in the industry.

Experienced developers who are comfortable with the command line and willing to spend the time managing and maintaining their VPS will find a great deal with A2 Hosting's unmanaged servers, which also enable customers to select from a staggering 15 different operating systems.

Beyond the myriad of management and operating system options, customers can also select cloud-powered VPS options to receive the ultimate redundancy and reliability, custom-fit servers, and flexible resource monitoring and scaling.

When it comes to speed and performance, A2 Hosting pulls out all the stops. The company's Turbo option, paired with its exclusive Site Accelerator software suite, produce page load speeds up to 20 times faster than competitors.

A2 Hosting holds a breadth of opportunities for flexibility, cost control, and custom solutions built for VPS customers. With an emphasis on performance and a commitment to solving customer problems, you won't regret going turbo with A2 Hosting's VPS packages.

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  • Turbo server & cache options for 20x faster page loads
  • Well-appointed plans starting with 4GB RAM and 4 vCPUs
  • FREE CDN plus auto-installs with Softaculous
  • Multilingual support and up to unlimited databases
  • Enhanced security with and daily kernel updates
  • Get started on A2 Hosting now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
75 GB SSD - 150 GB SSD
Domain Name
New or Transfer

VPS Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

With scalable RAM and SSD storage, DreamHost's VPS plans give customers a powerful, speedy, and stable environment ripe for growth. RAM ranges from 1GB to 8GB, while storage varies between 30GB and 240GB. ... read more +

With scalable RAM and SSD storage, DreamHost's VPS plans give customers a powerful, speedy, and stable environment ripe for growth. RAM ranges from 1GB to 8GB, while storage varies between 30GB and 240GB.

While DreamHost's VPS storage space and RAM options are in line with the industry average, DreamHost layers on a bevy of additional perks that turns their already competitive prices into big bargains.

Starting with all-SSD infrastructure, which boosts your website or application's speed by 20 times compared to standard SATA disk drives, DreamHost also includes a dedicated IP address and free SSL/TLS certificates, as well as unlimited bandwidth, domain hosting, and email accounts.

You can manage your virtual servers through DreamHost's custom control panel, which has been developed for more than 15 years. Although we originally missed the familiarity of cPanel or Plesk, we quickly adapted to DreamHost's sleek, modern panel. Easily scale your virtual servers up or down based on your expected needs.

For an added performance boost, DreamHost offers an add-on MySQL VPS service that puts your website's database on its own isolated server. Linux-VServers dedicate an initial 2300MB of RAM to your site, giving customers a sneak peek at what DreamHost's dedicated hosting looks like.

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  • Custom web-based control panel
  • Unlimited MySQL databases
  • Easily scalable RAM
  • High-performance SSD drives
  • 5 years of security updates with Ubuntu Long Term Support
  • Get started on DreamHost now.
Money Back Guarantee
N/A
Disk Space
30 GB - 240 GB SSD
Domain Name
New or Transfer

WordPress Hosting Comparison

WordPress Rating

★★★★★ 4.9/5.0

#3 out of 10 in WordPress Hosting reviews

As experts in performance optimization, A2 Hosting is a top choice for powering resource-heavy WordPress websites. The company offers shared or managed plans for the ultra-popular content management... read more +

As experts in performance optimization, A2 Hosting is a top choice for powering resource-heavy WordPress websites. The company offers shared or managed plans for the ultra-popular content management system, with the benefits extending to Joomla, Drupal, and other platforms.

A2's shared web hosting plans come with cPanel control panel, where users can access Softaculous auto-installer. Easily install popular web applications, including your choice of CMS, with one click. Alternatively, A2 Hosting experts will pre-install and configure WordPress for you, complete with PHP7 and HTTPS protection.

While the company's all-SSD infrastructure enables sites to fly, A2 Hosting's enhanced Turbo Servers and proprietary Site Accelerator particularly shine with WordPress plans, enabling 20-times-faster page loads and automatic compression and caching options.

To boost security and protect customers, the company build another custom program that auto-hardens WordPress sites for proactive protection against malicious attacks. Additionally, A2 Hosting offers virus scanning, a firewall, and brute-force attack protection — not to mention spam filtering for emails, which are also IMAP, POP3, and SMTP supported.

A2 Hosting offers 24/7 customer support and tons of optimized features made with WordPress users in mind. Whether you're an online retailer looking to launch a fresh site with WooCommerce or a moderately web-savvy WordPress user looking for speed and security excellence, we'd highly recommend A2 Hosting.

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  • FREE Cloudflare CDN and 1-click installs for WordPress
  • Turbo Server, SSD speed boost, and optimized caching
  • A2-optimized WP plugins for performance and security
  • SSL certificates, PayPal integration, and 24/7 support
  • FREE HackScan and KernelCare
  • Get started on A2 Hosting now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
Unlimited SSD
Domain Name
New or Transfer

WordPress Rating

★★★★★ 4.9/5.0

One of only three hosting providers recommended by the WordPress Core team, DreamHost has actively contributed to the WordPress community for more than a decade. The company's platform is optimized for the... read more +

One of only three hosting providers recommended by the WordPress Core team, DreamHost has actively contributed to the WordPress community for more than a decade. The company's platform is optimized for the incredibly popular content management system, and plans include easy setup, automated updates and backups, unlimited bandwidth, and 24/7 specialized support.

DreamHost does an admirable job tailoring its shared hosting service around WordPress, but we're most impressed with the company's fully managed WordPress solution, DreamPress. Launched in 2013, DreamPress offers enhanced speed, scaling, and security by configuring various settings and plugins that streamline WordPress installation, databases, and server operations.

DreamPress adds multiple caching layers and isolates server resources to perform more than five times faster than shared hosting. We love that DreamHost allocates two VPS servers for each DreamPress customer: one optimized for the frontend and the other for MySQL. You'll get the same SSD storage found elsewhere in DreamHost plans, but DreamPress dynamically auto-scales memory to grow with your traffic.

Support and security are further tailored to WordPress with automatic updates and a firewall that blocks known WordPress vulnerabilities and offers protection from brute-force attacks. DreamPress uses NGINX, HTTP2, and Let's Encrypt SSL/TLS certificates to balance performance and privacy.

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  • Preconfigured and fully managed option available with DreamPress
  • Multiple caching layers with Varnish, Memcached, and OPcache
  • 1-click install and automatic updates
  • WP-specific firewall for security
  • Pre-installed SSL/TLS certificate
  • Get started on DreamHost now.
Money Back Guarantee
97 days
Disk Space
Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

Site Builder Hosting Comparison

Website Builder Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

When it comes to site-building, A2 Hosting sets users up with all the tools they need to get a website built, launched, and thriving. The company's own drag-and-drop site builder offers total simplicity... read more +

When it comes to site-building, A2 Hosting sets users up with all the tools they need to get a website built, launched, and thriving. The company's own drag-and-drop site builder offers total simplicity for those without coding experience, or users can opt for design tools from Microweber or RapidWeaver.

Additionally, the inclusion of the cPanel control panel and Softaculous script library means dozens of other blogging, ecommerce, and content management systems are just a one-click installation away. A2 Hosting strives to make these setup processes as simplistic and intuitive as possible, and the company has built optimized plugins to configure each application to its specific infrastructure advantages automatically.

While we appreciate the wide range of site builder options, we're a little surprised to see relatively simple website elements, such as a blog, SSL certificate, or ecommerce store, are held out of A2 Hosting's introductory site builder plan. Upgrading to more expensive plans probably means the company is pricing themselves above many first-time site owners' budgets.

That being said, we appreciate the company's focus on providing an above-average experience for all types of customers. An emphasis on modern, high-powered hardware is combined with personalized and responsive support to help users learn about how to design, launch, and grow a website.

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  • Multiple website builder options for code-free design
  • Softaculous 1-click installs for WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla
  • A2-optimized caching (6x faster page loads) and Turbo Server (20x faster)
  • FREE blogging and ecommerce tools available, plus SSL security
  • 24/7/365 Guru Crew support
  • Get started on A2 Hosting now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
Unlimited SSD
Domain Name
New or Transfer

Website Builder Rating

★★★★★ 4.6/5.0

For a while, the only knock on DreamHost was the lack of a website builder for beginners unfamiliar with web design. With the relatively recent debut of Remixer, however, DreamHost has come up with yet... read more +

For a while, the only knock on DreamHost was the lack of a website builder for beginners unfamiliar with web design. With the relatively recent debut of Remixer, however, DreamHost has come up with yet another way to appeal to site owners.

Hosting providers creating their own site builders can be a risky venture — why devote resources to trying something new when there's a tried-and-true outside option such as Weebly? DreamHost, however, seems to have hit a home run with Remixer. We love how the clean and modern interface directs users straight to whatever tools they need.

Remixer offers several professional-grade templates that appeal to a surprisingly wide range of uses: small businesses, professionals, travelers, creatives, music, events, and even documentation. Remixer lets you preview each theme in desktop, tablet, and mobile (portrait AND landscape) views before getting to work.

The builder interface itself is equally impressive, giving users the options to customize, move, and add content based on row-based layouts. More experienced site owners will appreciate access to HTML code and the ability to use Markdown to format text.

Being a leader in WordPress web hosting, DreamHost enables users to export their Remixer website to WordPress to take advantage of powerful features such as SSL certificates, blogging, ecommerce, WordPress plugins, and other tools associated with the popular CMS.

If you're looking for a sleek, refreshing site builder, sign up for a shared hosting plan with DreamHost to access Remixer. Upgraded plans also include email accounts to give users a well-rounded and complete experience.

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  • Remixer enables users to create and manage sites without code
  • Preview themes for desktop, tablet, and mobile (portrait and landscape)
  • Responsive, professional themes
  • Royalty-free images from Pixabay
  • Easily export to WordPress
  • Get started on DreamHost now.
Money Back Guarantee
97 days
Disk Space
Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

A2 Hosting vs. DreamHost - Our Conclusion

Alexandra Leslie Alexandra Leslie Hosting Expert
“We tested A2 Hosting & DreamHost — The winner is A2 Hosting!”

And there’s the checkered flag! Many of the comparison checkpoints between A2 Hosting and DreamHost came down to a photo finish, so keep in mind that our second-place finisher is still a remarkably strong hosting option. Both privately-owned hosts prioritize top-of-the-line infrastructure and customer service, so we’re confident your site will be well taken care of, regardless of which car you get into. A2 Hosting has a slight performance edge with the company’s signature Turbo Servers, but we appreciate the 100% uptime guarantee and responsive technical support that DreamHost brings to the race.

Overall Rating
4.9/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit A2 Hosting »
Overall Rating
4.8/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit DreamHost »