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that's how it works. only the first time is the image downloaded. thereafter the image is retrieved from the user's cache.
So is it even neccessary to download each image into a separate movie clip? Can I just download one after another into the same movie clip thereby erasing the previous one? After that all calls to that image will still go to the cache in flash? Or do the images need to be held in a flash object?
no, it's not necessary (nor particularly efficient).
yes, you can download them sequentially into the same target movieclip.
yes, after intially retrieving the image from a server the image is thereafter retrieved from the user's cache (unless you do something to prevent that).
and no, the images don't need to exist within flash for retrievals after the first to be made from the cache.
Yes. So long as the path doesn't change, these images will be cached to the browsers cache just as if you were visiting a regular html page that has images on it.
I'm not sure if the same applies for after leaving the site (images are in IE/FF/Whatever's cache). It is quite possible that the Flash Player will kill any reference to the image after you leave the site and close your browser.
Awsome, thanks guys, you've been a great help.