I was hoping to have a rough version of my new software project TrackMyTV up and running today, but I've discovered that the virtual private server that I purchased from Dreamhost last week is probably the only time they haven't delivered as advertised.
The definition of "virtual private server" would imply something like Xen-based hosting: a virtual machine running on top of physical hardware, completely isolated from other virtual machines on the same physical box. But that's not what Dreamhost is providing: while you have root access, it seems that there are serious constraints on what you can actually do. You're evidently sharing some parts of the hard drive with other customers. APT is completely broken, as I found out when I tried to apt-get my own instance of Apache: every pre-install configuration script failed.
I could probably troubleshoot this, and find out a way to work around these problems. But why should I? I've done what I should have done weeks ago, and picked up a Linode virtual server. (I looked at prgrmr as well, since they also have a good reputation).
With any luck, my project will be up in a day or two.