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Since you have used "noindex, follow", they should still follow the direct image links.
perhaps this is a candidate for using the link rel canonical element
As for the image only pages, you may remove the noindex meta tag and specify the parent page as the canonical url.
not if you...allow the image page to be crawled and indexed
[edited by: indyank at 6:35 am (utc) on Aug 23, 2012]
But i am not sure why Google ignores indexing images when you simply add "noindex" and not "noimageindex". Are you sure that is the reason or is it that you have blocked images for others (except Google) using .htaccess. Can you two pls. confirm?
Having Google index from an image site-map, wouldn't that result in the image URL's being the ones used? Meaning... a Google visitor comes to the *.jpg url, where there is no HTML at all?
My images were well indexed when I did not have the "noindex" tag on large image pages
I also ran a google bot test from webmaster tools and for direct image links I get "Allowed" for googlebot, even fetch as google worked.
I'd love to have my images indexed, as long as the page they are associated with is my image attachment page, and not just the image URL all by itself. Having Google index from an image site-map, wouldn't that result in the image URL's being the ones used? Meaning... a Google visitor comes to the *.jpg url, where there is no HTML at all?
or linked from a separate page with minimal text
The practical benefit is that I don't have to decide which search engines go on the Allowed Exceptions list. Users can always see the tiny picture; to get the full-size version they have to go to the page.
so you aren't even allowing the search engine bots to see those large images and that would mean you are preventing them from indexing those large images
WMT tool only tests crawlability and not indexability.
You have not answered my question on whether you have blocked referrers other than Googlebot in your .htaccess file?