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Don't Hotlink, Download Instead!

by Candice Pardue

If you come across "free" clip-art, graphics, photos, etc. that you would like to place on your web pages, you'll want to save these images on your hard drive in most cases.

You can link to the graphic from your site where it is located, but this tremendously slows your web page loading time. The reason it slows loading time is because each time your web page loads, it will have to search for the graphic at a different location than your own page, which could take 30 seconds or more.

Also, if the site where your graphic is located becomes discontinued, or if the site's server is down, your web page will not have the graphic available any longer.

If you'll take a quick moment to save the graphic as a file on your hard drive, you'll have the graphic for keeps, and won't have to worry about delayed loading time.

A Quick Way to Save the Image on Your Hard Drive

1. Hold your mouse arrow over the image, and right click your mouse.

2. Choose "Save Image As".

3. Your hard drive access screen labeled "Save As" will appear where you can choose the folder to save the file in. I normally place the image into the same folder as my web page file. Netscape Composer requires the image file to be in the same folder as your web page. So, if I go ahead and do this now, it saves time later.

4. On your "Save As" screen, you'll notice a "File name:" box. Here is where you'll name your image file:

myimage.gif or myimage.jpg

The file extension .gif is recommended for graphics that are not photographs. The file extension .jpg is recommended for photos for best quality.

Once you've named your image, click "Save", and you're done.

This simple little step saves web design time, improves web page loading time, and allows you to have access to your own graphics.

Remember, do not simply link to images on other servers. Save images to your own hard drive, then upload them to your own server. You never know when an image elsewhere on the web will be removed, or the path changed.

Discussion - Graphics and Multimedia
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