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How to Get Full Headers - Unix Users

Elm, Mail and Mailx

Some more header info for some Unix mail programs.
Nearly nobody uses mail and mailx any more, but they're available on almost all UNIX systems, so let's start with those. You can exit your current mail program without changing the mailbox and then look at the mail message using mail or mailx.
Showing a mail message with the Print or P command displays all of the header lines. Note capital P -- it's important.
Saving the current mail message with the saveretain command saves all of the header lines. (On some systems, Save or S -- note the capitals! -- does this too).
There are lots of other mail readers; the one I use is ELM. In ELM, you display the headers for the current message with the H command.

Thanks to John M. for this information.

GNU/Emacs integrated email

Press the keys 'W', then 'v' in the summary or mail buffer.

Another method of temporarily switching to ALL headers is by pressing "Ctrl-u g" on the article in the summary buffer.

Thanks to the SpamCop FAQ for this information.

kmail (KDE Desktop)

In the KDE Mail Client that comes with the KDE desktop for Linux, select Message, View Source. Copy and paste the text from the "Message as Plain Text" window into a new message.

Thanks to the SpamCop FAQ for this information.


To get mutt (the mail user agent) to forward the full headers (not display them for viewing), use the command "unset forward_decode" in your rc file or directly in the command interface.

Thanks to the SpamCop FAQ for this information.


You must configure Pine to allow showing message headers. You may skip steps 1-3 below if you have performed this configuration.

  1. From the main Pine menu, type S for Setup, then C for Config.
  2. Use the space bar and down arrow to scroll until you reach the option [ ] enable-full-header-cmd, then type X in the box to toggle the option on.
  3. Type E to exit Config, and Y to save changes.
  4. 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.

Thanks to Julie Bernstein for this information.

Pronto Mail (GTK/unix)

  1. Click "Message" then "View Source"
  2. Highlight the message source as normal with the mouse
  3. Copy using Control+C
  4. Paste into a new message

Thanks to the SpamCop FAQ for this information.


I think I've figured out one way of of getting the full headers on Unix. We received a spam and the message had just the usual "from," "to," "date," "subject" headers. But when I saved the message in a directory, then used the "type" command or printed it out, full headers magically appeared, showing where they were really posting from.

Thanks to Marc for this information.

Ximian Evolution

Go to the "View" menu, select "Message Display" and click on "Show Full Headers."

Thanks to the SpamCop FAQ for this information.

Please see Ximian for further information.

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