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  1. #1
    SitePoint Wizard
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    changing image paths, implications

    Starting a site about 10 years back, the images are collected in a folder named 'images' unfortunately, and it was never changed. This of course isn't the best name, since highjackers seek this name out.

    If all images are switched to a new path, however, this will probably cause a disconnect with Google cached pages.

    a) How detrimental is this? I hessitate to do this since the site is now going through a major overhaul. Many other pages being retired with meta noindex, and a some with 301 redirects.

    b) Have noticed a lot of sites using the complete absolute path for images. Why is this? Does this create some sort of assurance that the images are being served from the same site/source?

  2. #2
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    If you are just changing the image folder name and not the actual image filenames you should be able to setup 301 redirects relatively easily. This should limit the affect of the name switch on your rankings.
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  3. #3
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    Not sure you can do the 301 with gif's.
    It's giving server errors.

  4. #4
    Mouse catcher silver trophy Stevie D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by datadriven View Post
    Starting a site about 10 years back, the images are collected in a folder named 'images' unfortunately, and it was never changed. This of course isn't the best name, since highjackers seek this name out.

    If all images are switched to a new path, however, this will probably cause a disconnect with Google cached pages.

    a) How detrimental is this? I hessitate to do this since the site is now going through a major overhaul. Many other pages being retired with meta noindex, and a some with 301 redirects.
    Putting a 301 redirect on the path will do the trick, it will ensure that any references to the old path are redirected, as well as updating search engine indexes.

    Hijackers will be able to find the images whatever path they use, they just need to look at the source code or right-click on the image to get it.

    b) Have noticed a lot of sites using the complete absolute path for images. Why is this? Does this create some sort of assurance that the images are being served from the same site/source?
    It's probably more to do with people not understanding the way the internet works, or CMSs that aren't sophisticated enough. In the old days, it might have been useful when people often downloaded pages for later reference, and that would ensure the images remained in place. With broadband now commonplace, very few people download pages these days, so it isn't an issue.

  5. #5
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    Hijackers will be able to find the images whatever path they use, they just need to look at the source code or right-click on the image to get it.
    True, but there is the question of greater likelihood. I've been talking about where malicious scripts are being run server-wide seeking the 'images' folder. But I guess this is just one method.

    There too is the question of, the remoteness of the folder path. Would:

    /anything/images/a.gif

    Be more protected by the first folder or not? Instead of:

    /images/a.gif

    That's a question I can't effectively answer since I'm not familiar with these routines.

  6. #6
    Mouse catcher silver trophy Stevie D's Avatar
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    Assuming that you don't allow access to the /images/ folder itself, and only to items within it, I don't see any difference. Unless the bots are looking for particular named files, which is going to be pretty hit-and-miss, and mostly miss, if they can't see the folder directory list then they can't find the images other than by scanning your pages to see where they've been used. And once they've found them, they've found them, regardless of what folder they're in.


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