Category Archives: Email Headers

MxToolBox Email Header Analyzer Makes Email Headers Readable

Our Email Header Analyzer has been around for a few years but we have recently polished it to include a few more cool features. Email Headers can be a real challenge to decipher which is why we developed this tool in the first place. In simple terms, it makes email headers as readable as the newspaper.  Email headers are present on every email you receive via the Internet and can provide valuable diagnostic information like mail server delays, anti-spam results and more.

So lets try out the tool and some of its new features. Simply grab some email headers (not sure how to get email headers?) and paste them into our tool here. To view the example below in a live format on our site, go here.

  1. Sharing - We have added sharing tools at the top of the page. Share with your IT Administrator, Support Department or Vendor to help with the troubleshooting process.
  1. Time Stamps - Visual graph that quickly shows the amount of time the message took at each server/hop. This view can help you see if if/where there was a delay at any of the servers.
  2. Server Hops - A more detailed look at the servers that touched the message, also includes delays in this format if applicable.
  3. Parsed Headers - Email Headers can be very confusing to read, so this part of the tool parses out the valuable information like Sender, Recipient, Date, Time, Subject of the message etc.
  4. Original Headers - Sometimes you need to refer back to the raw email header so we have put that information at the bottom.

Our website and its tools are constantly evolving and we would love to hear your feedback! Please let us know if you think something can be improved etc. Hit us back at feedback@mxtoolbox.com.

If you are concerned about mail delays or other performance issues with your server we would highly recommend trying our Premium MailFlow Monitoring. This service sends a message through your server and back to our datacenter. This unique method allows us to provide complete mail flow visibility on your server. This can help uncover issues that might be creating delays as well as detecting both inbound or outbound mailflow failures.  In addition to alerts for failure, you can login to see daily, weekly and/or monthly historical statistics. This method allows you to get a true picture of the performance of your mail server.

Additional Resources
How to Get Email Headers
MailFlow Monitoring

How to Get Email Headers – A Guide from MxToolBox

This Guide has been Updated -  http://mxtoolbox.com/Public/Content/EmailHeaders/

When reporting spam that slips past the filters, it is essential that we receive the full message headers from a message. Additionally, sometimes our Support department may request the full headers from an email message in order to troubleshoot mail delivery problems.

Every single Internet e-mail message is made up of two parts the header and the message body of the email. Every single email you send or receive on the Internet contains an Internet Header, a full and valid e-mail header provides a detailed log of the network path taken by the message between the mail sender and the mail receiver(s) (email servers).

Your email client program will usually hide the full header or display only lines, such as From, To, Date, and Subject, see below for more information on pulling headers for your email client:

Note: Please put a short but descriptive note in the subject or the body of the message so we can quickly assess your issue or problem.

Note: If you need assistance in understanding email headers, please feel free to use our Email Header Analyzer.

  1. Outlook 2003
  2. Outlook 2007
  3. Outlook 2010
  4. Outlook Express
  5. Outlook 97
  6. Outlook 98
  7. Outlook 2000
  8. Outlook 2002
  9. Microsoft Exchange
  10. Zimbra
  11. Entourage
  12. Mac OS X Mail
  13. Outlook Express for Macintosh
  14. Gmail (works for Google Apps as well)
  15. Yahoo!
  16. AOL
  17. Hotmail
  18. Eudora
  19. Netscape, Mozilla or Thunderbird
  20. Lotus Notes
  21. Pine
  22. XtraMail
  23. Pegasus Mail
  24. Claris Emailer
  25. Mail Warrior
  26. Juno
  27. Novell Groupwise

Outlook 2003 – Back to Top

  1. To begin, open the email message in a new window by double-clicking on it.
  2. On this new window menu, go to View -> Options. If you do not see options, you may have to reveal it by clicking on the two down arrows at the bottom of the menu.

  3. This will have brought up the Message Options window. The last component of this is the Internet Headers. Right-click inside the headers and choose Select All, then right-click again and choose Copy.
  4. Close the Message Options window.
  5. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Outlook 2007 – Back to Top

  1. Double click on the email message so that it is opened in its own window. If you are new to Outlook 2007, you will be working on what is called the Ribbon. This is a series of tabs across the top of the message, Message, Developer etc.
  2. On the Message tab, in the Options section there is a little button with an arrow in it. Click on it and you have the message options menu with the internet headers in the bottom section.
  3. This will have brought up the Message Options window. The last component of this is the Internet Headers.
  4. Right-click inside the headers and choose Select All, then right-click again and choose Copy.

  5. Close the Message Options window.
  6. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Outlook 2010 – Back to Top

  1. Double click on the email message so that it is opened in its own window.
  2. On the Message tab, in the Options section there is a little button with an arrow in it. Click on it and you have the message options menu with the internet headers in the bottom section.
  3. This will bring up the Message Options window. The last component of this is the Internet Headers.
  4. Right-click inside the headers and choose Select All, then right-click again and choose Copy.
  5. Close the Message Options window.
  6. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Outlook Express – Back to Top

  1. To begin, open the email message in a new window by double-clicking on it.
  2. From the File menu, click Properties.
  3. Click the Details tab.

  4. Click Message Source. A new window will open containing all the headers and original message:
  5. Right-click anywhere inside this window and choose Select All.
  6. Right-click again and choose Copy.
  7. Close this window, the details window and the message window (so you are back to the main Outlook Express program).
  8. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Outlook 97 – Back to Top

To view headers in Outlook 97, it may require the update: Internet Mail Enhancement Patch

  1. If you already have the update or just installed it, open any message and look for Internet headers on the Options tab. If you don’t see the Options tab, choose View | Message Header to display it.

Outlook 98 – Back to Top

  1. Open the message you’d like to view headers for.
  2. Click Options from the drop-down menus.
  3. Near the bottom of the screen you’ll see a section titled Internet Headers.
  4. Right-click inside the headers and choose Select All, then right-click again and choose Copy.
  5. Close the Message Source box.
  6. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Outlook 2000 – Back to Top

  1. Open the message you’d like to view headers for.
  2. Select Options, then Full Headers.
  3. Right-click inside the headers and choose Select All, then right-click again and choose Copy.
  4. Close the Message Source box.
  5. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Outlook 2002 – Back to Top

  1. Open the message you’d like to view headers for.
  2. Click Options from the drop-down menu.
  3. A box called Message Options pops up.
  4. Near the bottom of the box you’ll see a text area titled Internet headers.
  5. Right-click inside the headers and choose Select All, then right-click again and choose Copy.
  6. Close the Message Source box.
  7. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Microsoft Exchange – Back to Top

  1. Click the “File” menu
  2. Click “Properties”
  3. Click the “Details” tab
  4. Click “Message Source”
  5. Highlight, copy and paste everything in the “Message Source” windows

Zimbra – Back to Top

  1. Right click the desired message and select Show Original
  2. This will open a new window with the source headers, select all and send in a new message to spam@mxtoolbox.com.

Entourage – Back to Top

  1. To begin, open the email message in a new window by double-clicking on it.
  2. Choose View > Internet Headers.
  3. Click inside the new box that appears in your message and choose Edit > Select All.
  4. Click inside the box again and choose Edit > Copy
  5. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Mac OS X Mail – Back to Top

  1. To begin, open the email message in a new window by double-clicking on it.
  2. View > Message > Raw Source
  3. Copy the headers by right clicking, selecting all and then choosing copy.
  4. Close the Message Source box.
  5. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Outlook Express for Macintosh – Back to Top

  1. Select the email.
  2. Choose View and then choose Source.
  3. A new window will appear containing the email with full headers.
  4. Press command + A, to select all, then command + C to copy.

Gmail (works for Google Apps as well) – Back to Top

  1. Open the message you’d like to view headers for.
  2. Click the down arrow next to Reply, at the top-right of the message pane.
  3. Select Show original.
  4. The full headers will appear in a new window, simply right-click inside the headers and choose Select All, then right-click again and choose Copy.
  5. Close the Message Source box.
  6. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Yahoo! – Back to Top

  1. Go to Options > General Preferences
  2. Under Mail Viewing Preferences, go to Message Headers, then select ALL.
  3. Hit the small down arrow next to Forward and choose As Inline Text.
  4. Forward the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com.

AOL – Back to Top

The email files are in an html format. The objective is to save the file in html format. This can be done as follows:

  1. To begin, open the email message by clicking on it.
  2. Click on Details (right above the To: and From: fields) and choose View Message Source.
  3. The full headers will appear in a new window, simply right-click inside the headers and choose Select All, then right-click again and choose Copy.
  4. Close the Message Source box.
  5. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Hotmail – Back to Top

  1. In the left pane, click Mail.
  2. In the Folders list, click Inbox.
  3. Once in the Inbox, click on the message that you are getting the headers for.
  4. Right-click the message in the message list, and then click View source.
  5. The full headers will appear in a new window, simply right-click inside the headers and choose Select All, then right-click again and choose Copy.
  6. Close the Message Source box.
  7. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Eudora – Back to Top

  1. To begin, open the email message in a new window by double-clicking on it.
  2. Click on the tool bar icon labeled blah, blah, blah.
  3. Copy the headers by right clicking, selecting all and then choosing copy.
  4. Choose Edit > Copy.
  5. Close the Message Source box.
  6. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Netscape, Mozilla or Thunderbird – Back to Top

  1. To begin, open the email message in a new window by double-clicking on it.
  2. Choose View > Headers > All
  3. This will expand the top of your email message and it will now include the full headers.
  4. Right-click again and choose Copy.
  5. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

Lotus Notes – Back to Top

Lotus Notes v.4.x
  1. Look for the first line that begins with “Received”. There should be a blank line just above it.
  2. Then, scroll down to the next blank line. The data in-between the two blank lines are the headers you need.
Lotus Notes v.5.x
  1. Open your inbox
  2. Highlight the message that you wish to get header information for.
  3. Choose File -> Export…
  4. Type in a filename, leave the type as “Structured Text” and click Export
  5. From the Dialog Box that comes up, choose “Selected Documents” and click OK
  6. Now you can open that message you saved in WordPad and Cut and Paste it.

Pine – Back to Top

You must configure Pine to allow showing message headers. You may skip steps 1-6 below if you have performed this configuration.

  1. Press the h key while viewing the message to show full headers. If this returns the error Command h not defined for this screen, do the following:
  2. Go to the Pine start up screen.
  3. Hit s for Setup.
  4. Hit c for Config.
  5. Scroll down to the section labeled Advanced Command Preferences.
  6. Put an x for the enable-full-header-cmd feature.
  7. Type E to exit Config, and Y to save changes.
  8. The next time you read a message, type H and the full headers will be displayed at the top of the message. Type H again to hide the headers.
  9. You should now be looking at the original message window. Click on forward and address the message to spam@mxtoolbox.com. In the area above the copied part of the message, Paste the Internet Headers and click Send.

XtraMail – Back to Top

  1. Log into XtraMail
  2. Click on “Options” in the left-hand navigation bar.
  3. Click the “Display” button.
  4. Change the Message Headers option to “Full”.
  5. Click the OK button to confirm.

Pegasus Mail – Back to Top

  1. In the New Mail or other folder window:
  2. Right click the message, and select Message Properties.
  3. In the right hand column uncheck the box beside Contains HTML data.
  4. Click OK. That should allow you to see the message as a text message only.
  5. Click Ctrl-H to bring up the full headers.

Claris Emailer – Back to Top

Version 2.0 and higher:

  1. Use the “Show Long Headers” option in the “Mail” menu while you have the message open.

Versions earlier than 2.0:

  1. Click the blue triangle near the “from” information to show additional message information
  2. Click the “Show Original Headers…” button to bring up the full header info.

Mail Warrior – Back to Top

  1. When viewing the message, click File, then Save Message As.
  2. A standard save window will appear.
  3. Save the message as a .txt file (document.txt).
  4. Open the file you created, select all (ctrl-A) and copy (ctrl-c).
  5. And paste (ctrl-v).

Juno Version 4+ – Back to Top

  1. On the drop down menu “Options”
  2. Choose “Email Options” (press ctrl-E)
  3. Under “Show Message Headers”, select the “full” option.
  4. Click the OK button to save the setting. Juno version 4+ can display MIME and HTML email, but does not provide a way of viewing the HTML Source for the message within Juno.

Novell GroupWise – Back to Top

  1. Open the message
  2. In the message window select: File > Attachments > View
  3. Select the Mime.822 attachment

Note: If you need assistance in understanding email headers, please feel free to use our Email Header Analyzer.