How to view full email headers in Outlook 2010


Open the specific email message of interest in a new window by double-clicking its line in the email summary pane.

Go to the “File” tab in the new window and click on the “Properties” button.

Note that if you go to the “File” tab in your main Outlook window (as opposed to the window that you popped up with a single email message), it will not have a “Properties” button, because these are specific to a single message rather than the whole application.

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When you click the “Properties” button, a new Properties window should pop up:

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The headers are in the bottom portion of the window. Copy and paste to an editor in order to view them in a more convenient manner.


Comments (19)

  1. Noneya says:

    You do realize, that the whole purpose of examining the header information is to determine whether to even open it or not, right?  

    So–your method requires that I open it FIRST . . . defeating the whole purpose of examining the header in the first place . . .

    Brilliant!

  2. Richard Hartes says:

    Not necessarily. You might want to see the sending server, so you can add it to your blacklisting's, for example.

  3. mkeighley says:

    What a dreadfully clumsy, un-intuitive way of viewing what can be (depending on circumstances) critically important information.  The design team should be ashamed.

    Like Noneya, I do NOT wish to double-click a suspected Trojan-bearing spam, then click some more, then copy-and-paste into a different application, just to verify that this does in fact originate from central Asia and not from my bank after all.

    Every security firm around advises us to delete spam and phishing emails UNREAD.  You make that nigh-impossible by only giving us sender and subject to look at before opening it.  A real step backwards.

  4. Me Mate Dave says:

    I completely agree, this is an atrocious decision and the UI design team (if there even is one, I see little evidence supporting it) should be fired.

  5. Jon says:

    Another dropped ball by MS.  What a joke.  The whole purpose of viewing the headers is so you wont have to open the email.  Each version gets worse.

  6. Jon says:

    Found a work around if anyone is interested.  MS buried the command.  Go to the down arrow on the very top left and choose more commands.  choose all commands and scroll down to message options then click add then ok.  the email headers will now appear as a button just to left of the down arrow at the top of the window you first clicked on

  7. Mike says:

    Jon, you are a star!

    Spamcop is going to be getting a lot of emails from me soon.

  8. Marcel says:

    Spamcop needs to have full headers. This is not provided by outlook 🙁

  9. PreferLinux says:

    PoS Lookout (aka Outlook)….why do we have to open a message to now see the headers…M$ strikes again

  10. Paul says:

    Thanks Jon. Great info on the customization "arrow".

  11. Joe says:

    Jon – Thanks mate – Works an absolute treat!

  12. robert says:

    i'm still not seeing the received:   lines.    Just a return path showing the email address it's from.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Robert: primary purpose of seeing header is to see if it is authentic.  That's right at the beginning.  The "received" info is down many lines.  And thanks to Jon for reminding me that's what that button is for.

  14. Anonymous says:

    There is no need to open a message to see the headers !!!

    Just take a look at the link : http://www.msoutlook.info/…/450

  15. MKD says:

    nikojohn, THANK YOU for that link because the "arrow" answer didn't tell us WHERE the "arrow" was, and this article was EXACTLY what we needed! You ROCK!!

  16. A Non-Retarded User says:

    Sweet baby Jesus are some of you retarded.

    First, a big thanks to nikojohn for providing an easier way to check headers.

    As for those of you bitching at M$ for this and saying it defeats the whole purpose of viewing headers: You have literally _no_ idea what you're talking about, and I mean that in the meanest, most condescending way possible. Your level of stupidity is on par with that of an amoeba.

    In order to view the headers you'll need to load the email from the server, how this happens varies based on whether you're using exchange, imap or pop but the bottom line is by the time you're looking at the headers the email is already on your PC. Luckily for you however a virus/malware/trojan cannot inject your PC via email, unless you have your outlook setup to allow external HTML and you never apply updates. To get around this, spammers and those with malicious intent will either include an attachment or website link that they try to trick you into opening. The email itself however is completely harmless.

    I'll repeat that, since I know your skull is so thick I'll have to hammer this point into it: The email itself is harmless, even if it contains a .bat attachment and a link to a malware site. The actual email is not what will infect your computer, so viewing it is perfectly safe.

  17. Mike Lit says:

    Dear A Non-Retarded User,

    I won't stoop to your level, call you names or question your intelligence; however, I will point out that where I work, we are "tested" periodically to see if we will open an email message without knowing who the sender is.  Because of this rule, I need to be able to check on the sender information without opening the actual message.  It doesn't matter whether or not the email is harmless; I will fail any test that is given at me if I open the message and the address is "fake."  I'm sure that others have their reasons for not wanting to open a message as well; as a result, they are simply pointing out that the answer provided isn't necessarily the correct one in all situations.

  18. c says:

    I'm searching and searching… is Outlook forcing UTC into the "Date: " header?  Instead of Local time – like it's supposed to per RFC?  Does anyone inside the ecosystem of MS 'mail' realize how pathological that is?

  19. Matt Romero says:

    I found a way to add the "From E-mail Address" column in Outlook 2010. It works great for me!!

    Here it is: http://www.howto-outlook.com/…/viewsenderaddress.htm