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Trace an email with its full headers

For an email you received in Gmail, you can see where the email came from by looking at its headers, including how it got from the sender to the recipient's mail servers.

View your email's full headers

Gmail
  1. From a browser, open Gmail.
  2. Open the email you want to check the headers for.
  3. Next to Reply Reply, click the Down arrow Down Arrow.
  4. Click Show original.

The headers will show in a new window, including fields like authentication results.

Inbox by Gmail
  1. From a browser, open Inbox.
  2. Open the email you want to see the headers for.
  3. Inside the message, click More More and then Show original.

The headers will show in a new window.

Other mail services
AOL
  1. Log in to your AOL account.
  2. Open the email you want to see the headers for.
  3. In the "Action" menu, select View Message Source.

The headers will show in a new window.

Excite Webmail
  1. Log in to your Excite account.
  2. Open the email you want to see the headers for.
  3. Click View Full Headers.

The headers will show in a new window.

Hotmail
  1. Log in to your Hotmail account.
  2. Click Inbox.
  3. Right-click the email you want to see the headers for.
  4. Click View Message Source.

The headers will show in a new window.

Yahoo! Mail
  1. Log in to your Yahoo! Mail account.
  2. Select the email you want to see the headers for.
  3. Click More and then View Raw Message.

The headers will show in a new window.

Apple Mail
  1. Open Apple Mail.
  2. Open the email you want to see the headers for.
  3. Click View and then Message and then All Headers.

The headers will show in the window below your inbox.

Mozilla
  1. Open Mozilla.
  2. Open the email you want to see the headers for.
  3. Click View and then  Message Source. 

The headers will show in a new window.

Opera
  1. Open Opera.
  2. Click the email you want to see the headers for so it shows in the window below your inbox.
  3. Right click the body of the email.
  4. Click View All Headers and Message.

The headers will show in the window below.

Outlook
  1. Open Outlook.
  2. Open the email you want to see the headers for.
  3. Click File and then Properties.

The headers will show in the "Internet headers" box.

Outlook Express
  1. Open Outlook Express.
  2. Right click the email you want to see the headers for.
  3. Click Properties.
  4. Click the Details tab.

The headers will show in the box that pops up.

How to read email full headers

  1. Open the email you want to check the headers for.
  2. Next to Reply Reply, click the Down arrow Down Arrow.
  3. Click Show original.
  4. Copy the text on the page.
  5. Open the Message header tool.
  6. Click Paste your email's headers and then Analyze the header above.

See if message is delayed

  1. Open the email you want to check the headers for.
  2. Next to Reply Reply, click the Down arrow Down Arrow.
  3. Click Show original.
  4. Next to "Created at," look to see how much time it took for the email to be delivered after it was sent.

Vivian is a Gmail expert and the author of this help page. Leave her feedback about this help page.

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