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A Brief Description About Apple Mail Email Header

Apple Mail is an email client which comes with all the Apple operating system like Mac OS, iOS and Watch OS. It was originally developed by NeXT as NeXTmail which was then the part of the NeXTSTEP operating system. After Apple Inc. Acquired the NeXT then it was later called as the Apple Mail. The currently running version of the Apple Mail uses the SMTP protocol for sending the messages, IMAP and POP3 for retrieving the email messages and for the end to end encryption it uses S/MIME protocol. Plus, the Apple Mail can be configured with email clients like Gmail, Yahoo Mail, iCloud, and Exchange Server. The last version of Apple Mail was version 10.2 released in the year 2016.

So, whenever the user tries to send and receive the email with the help of Apple Mail email client that email message will contain some block of text which is called as the header in the Apple Mail email client. The header in the email contains the information about that email and user can further use it for the analysis of its attributes which are contained in that particular email client. So, we will discuss how to Open Email Headers of a particular email message using the Apple Mail email client.

Need of Apple Mail Email Header Analysis

There are many such cases and situations where the forensic analyst needs to analyze the emails which are being sent by the unknown person from unknown email address who might be accessing the Apple Mail account. Basically, this process is being used to analyze and investigate the particular email message which is found to be unknown.

Steps to View Apple Mail Email Headers

For performing the email header analysis using the Apple Mail email client first open the particular email message on which the header analysis has to be performed and then view the header part of that particular email message. All the email headers of the particular email will not be directly displayed to the user. In order to view the email headers in the Apple Mail email perform the following steps mentioned below and this only applies to all the versions released for Apple Mail:

  • Open the Apple Mail application and then select any email message where the headers have to be viewed.

Select an message

  • Now click on the View tab and then select the Message option and under Message select the option Raw Source.

view apple mail header

  • After that, the user can review all the details of the email headers at the top of the email message. The email headers include all the information like the mail server, content type, IP address used etc.

analyze apple mail header

Description of Each Attribute in Apple Mail Email Headers

Message ID: It is that kind of unique ID and contained in every email message and it is a combination of numerals and alphabets with the web extension. This ID different to one particular email message.

MIME-Version: This attribute of the Apple Mail shows the current version of the MIME being used in that particular email message.

X-Originalarrivaltime: This attribute in Apple Mail headers shows the original arrival time of the email with its current date and time.

Content-Type: This attribute in Apple Mail header shows the type of content of an email message. Plus, it displays the information and character set contained in that particular email message.

X-eopatrributedmessage: It contains the value while the user has received any message or not. It has either 0 or 1 as its value.

From: In this attribute of Apple Mail it shows the email ID from where the user has received the email from.

To: In this attribute of Apple Mail it shows the email ID to whom the email message was sent to.

Date: In this attribute of Apple Mail it shows the date on which that particular email message was sent.

Delivery-Date: The delivery date and the time are mentioned in this attribute of Apple Mail.

X-Mailer: In this attribute of Apple Mail the email client is mentioned and the IP address it has received the email from.


So, here in this post, we discussed how to open the email headers in Apple Mail email client on Mac operating system. So, now Apple Mail users can use this post and get all the information from the email headers using the Apple Mail email client in Mac operating system. Also, this post gives users the complete information about the Apple Mail email header and it will become very easy and useful for all the forensic analysts to investigate on the particular email message. The Forensic Email Search Software helps an examiner to find out any important information from email messages.