How do I view an e-mail header?

Updated: 12/31/2020 by Computer Hope
Email

There are different reasons to why a user may want to view an e-mail header. Below is a short list of different reasons why a user may want to view the headers.

  1. Troubleshoot issues with e-mail.
  2. Grab information that helps treat future messages as spam.
  3. Determine who really sent an e-mail.

Below are the steps required for viewing an e-mail header in all e-mail programs and services.

Microsoft Outlook users

  1. From Outlook, right-click the e-mail and choose Options.
  2. At the bottom of the Message Options window, you can view the e-mail or Internet headers.
  3. If you want to copy this header to help report SPAM, click in this window and press Ctrl+A to select all text, and press Ctrl+C to copy the text.

Microsoft Outlook Express users

  1. Open the e-mail you want to view.
  2. Select File and click Properties.
  3. Finally, click the Details tab to view the e-mail header.
  4. If you want to copy this header to help report SPAM, click in this window and press Ctrl+A to select all text, and press Ctrl+C to copy the text.

Mozilla Thunderbird users

  1. Open Thunderbird.
  2. Click View at the top of the window.
  3. Click Headers and select All. Once selected, all messages you want to view now have the header at the top.

Google Gmail users

  1. Open the e-mail in Google Gmail.
  2. Click the down arrow in the top-right portion of the e-mail.
  3. In the menu that appears after clicking the down arrow, click show original. After clicking this, a new window appears with the complete original message including the e-mail header.

Microsoft Hotmail users

  1. Open the e-mail in Microsoft Hotmail.
  2. In the message, click the Options at the top-right portion of the screen.
  3. Click Mail Display Settings.
  4. In this screen you'll be able to select None, Basic, Full, or Advanced. If you want to display the headers, select Full or Advanced.
  5. Click Ok. After completing these steps, each message you open shows the e-mail header.

Additional information