I just uploaded an image for a user to their original question and the system automatically shrinks the image to fit within the viewport. However, because it is scaled you can't see it. If I save the picture from my browser I can see the full size version.

Wouldn't it be better to make each image also a link that when clicked would simply open a new display with the larger version of the image available?

ARR w/ URL Rewrite on IIS 7 - Browser identifier incorrect

3 Answers 3


Short answer: Because the guy who asked the question didn't make them links.

Long answer: Stack Exchange sites resize images to fit as best they can.
If your image is huge and you want a link you have to specify it like any other link (and if the originator didn't do this you can fix it for them)

[![enter image description here][1]][1]
  [1]: https://i.sstatic.net/sKK1i.png

You can also use smaller images for the inline display by appending s (small) or m (medium) to the image name --

Medium Image --> Medium Image (https://i.sstatic.net/sKK1im.png)

Small Image --> Medium Image (https://i.sstatic.net/sKK1im.png)

  • 7
    It's worth noting that none of this is described in the Editing Help markdown documentation. So if you think you've missed a memo you haven't -- the memo was never issued.
    – voretaq7
    Commented Aug 27, 2012 at 15:59
  • 2
    Well damn, yea that would make the most sense. Just sorta wished this was automatic. At least maybe we should try to get the markdown samples/examples updated? Commented Aug 27, 2012 at 16:07
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    Actually I think making them auto link all the time is sensible too, this is just the current workaround :)
    – voretaq7
    Commented Aug 27, 2012 at 16:11
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    Is there any real reason why we have virtually no useful documentation for how the SE sites work? Documentation on other SE sites doesn't count. Nobody should need to visit another site to find out how theirs works. Perhaps you can use a cattle prod on somebody, although I suspect I'm not the first to suggest such a thing. Commented Aug 28, 2012 at 21:23
  • In order to use a smaller image for the inline display but link to the larger version, you need to do this:[![enter image description here][2]][1] .... .... [1]: i.sstatic.net/sKK1i.png [2]: i.sstatic.net/sKK1is.png
    – ItsGC
    Commented Sep 5, 2012 at 7:18
  • @JohnGardeniers FWIW I raised the need to update the image portion of our Markdown editing help page with the powers that be. Making that documentation more visible should probably be an item too.
    – voretaq7
    Commented Sep 5, 2012 at 15:50
  • @vortaq7, on behalf of all those who care, thank you. Commented Sep 5, 2012 at 22:56

There's no really good reason... It would require either client side JavaScript or server side verification to know if the image has to be scaled to fit in the Post div. Coding that is extra work.

Making them all links could work too, I don't see any real downside in that.

But considering we've been asking for underlines on the links for ~3 years and it still hasn't happened, I wouldn't hold my breath on this improvement either.

  • 2
    Wouldn't it make more sense just to link it, regardless of whether or not it was scaled? This at least provides you with a direct link to the image in a new browser window. Plus, a JavaScript snippet to check an image size is not that much work. Hence the "feature request" tag. Commented Aug 27, 2012 at 15:47
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    @BrentPabst things that make sense? You must be new here!
    – voretaq7
    Commented Aug 27, 2012 at 16:05
  • Coding that is trivial and shouldn't take more than a couple of minutes. Knowing the display size, it's a simple matter of reading the image size and comparing the two. A display link can be attached to the image if the display size is smaller than the image size. Let's face it, the rest of the Internet does this stuff easily enough. Commented Aug 28, 2012 at 21:29
  • @JohnGardeniers Trivial or not, they haven't changed code like that in 3+ years...
    – Chris S
    Commented Aug 29, 2012 at 2:15
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    Extra work? Oh no we can't allow that? So I guess we can't have the server create a FEW common display sizes and have client side select one of these that best fits the div width as known at DOM inspection time.
    – Skaperen
    Commented Sep 3, 2012 at 0:06

Wouldn't it be better to make each image also a link that when clicked would simply open a new display with the larger version of the image available?

It is not strictly necessary - it is a feature of every major browser available on the market. Just right-click the image and use "Open image", "View image" or a similarly named label from the context menu to view it unshrinked (or shrinked to window size but zoomable). Of course, making it clickable is much more intuitive.

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