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What is Hotlinking and can I do this from my site?

Hotlinking is when one site displays typically an image that is hosted on a different server or site than it's own. The most common type of hotlinking is done with images, especially in forums for user avatars (pictures shown under the user's name), signatures, banners and eBay auction pictures. You can use your web space to host images that you can use on other people's forums, or for your auctions.

How do I hotlink an image from my site?

If you wish to use an image from your site in your forum posts, as a forum avatar, in your signature or to show on an eBay auction, you just need to provide the direct link to the image. For example:

<img src="">

or if you wish to use your image in a phpBB forum you can link to it with this code:


This will display the image from your site on the other site's pages anytime someone visits that other site's page.

Note About File Size:

If you are using hotlinking to show images for an auction, such as eBay or for a banner or signature in a forum post, please be mindful of the file size. Some forums only allow up to a certain file or image size to be posted. It is best that your images be no larger than 640 x 480 in size and a file size no larger than 100K maximum if you're going to use them for hotlinking purposes.

What if I someone else hotlinks to an image on my site?

If you have images on your site and you think that people are displaying them on their site without your permission or knowledge, there are things you can do to find who is doing this and what you can do to prevent this from happening. Please see our FAQ on How To Tell If Someone Is Directly Linking (Hotlinking) To Your Files for more information.


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