Thanks for your questions. Yes, we made some changes in our hosting system on September 22nd. All new projects are created with that new Database Host you noted.
For security reasons, we cannot give out details about the new database host beyond that it is running an updated version of MySQL. Direct access to the database with PHP or additional Perl scripts, when necessary, is best performed on dedicated servers. More information about the cost for dedicated servers is available here: http://www.sawtoothsoftware.com/services/hosting
I understand these changes may present some inconvenience. If you would like to further discuss any questions or concerns, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org