Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Image Redirection to Prevent Hotlinking

Here's a great idea for posting images that you are not directly hosting already:

To avoid hot-linking an image, prepend before the URL. To show a thumbnail of the image, prepend before the URL.

Details: When posting on message boards or blogs, often you want to show or link to an image on another website. Directly showing or linking to that image is called hot-linking. It's generally bad because it leeches bandwidth from the host site, and as a result many webmasters have their servers set up to prohibit hot-linking.

The typical work-around is to do the following:
  • Save the image to your hard drive
  • Navigate to a free image-hosting website
  • Enter the path to the image on your hard drive
  • Wait for it to upload
  • Copy the new URL and paste it into your message-board or blog post
That's rather tedious. Well lets you simply enter the original URL in your post as you normally would, but with written before the URL. When this is viewed, the image will be copied once to, and from then on the image will always be served from instead of the host site. Additionally, a thumbnail is automatically generated, which can be accessed by adding before the original URL.

Here the image (myself making rock cairns on a riverside beach last year) must be retrieved from the server where it is stored . . . hot linked. Bandwidth gets used and if I didn't own that website I might get a little peeved.

This is exactly the same image retrieved once and served free from No bandwidth gets used on the server where this image originally came from and therefore I'm not likely to piss someone off for hotlinking.

Related Posts with Thumbnails