Examine http response headers in IE8

I'm looking for an ie8-addon that displays the http headers like firebug or httpliveheaders do. Any advice is appreciated.

edit: I may be blind but it seems as if the built-in developer tools (F12) do not show the http headers.


You might be looking for Fiddler2

Fiddler is a Web Debugging Proxy which logs all HTTP(S) traffic between your computer and the Internet. Fiddler allows you to inspect all HTTP(S) traffic, set breakpoints, and "fiddle" with incoming or outgoing data. Fiddler includes a powerful event-based scripting subsystem, and can be extended using any .NET language.

Fiddler is freeware and can debug traffic from virtually any application, including Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Opera, and thousands more.

If you want to view HTTP headers in your IE I recommend using DebugBar. I've tested it with IE8 and it was working with no problems. It has also few other useful features like validating HTML or viewing cookies.

However I see two problems with this tool:

  • for personal use it is for free, otherwise you have to pay.
  • dynaTrace had some compatibility issues with DebugBar.

Not a full answer, but a step in the right direction:

In http://blogs.msdn.com/b/ie/archive/2010/04/22/ie9-developer-tools-network-tab.aspx it says:

The [IE9] developer tools include some new capabilities and improvements over the tools in IE8:

A new tab for inspecting network traffic.

So inspecting network traffic is impossible in IE8 Developer Tools. You'll need to install something else. See the other answers for final solutions.

Skip IE, use curl.

This command will output the headers for google.com as if they were requested by IE8:

curl -s -A="Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 8.0; Windows NT 5.1; Trident/4.0)" -D - -o /dev/null http://www.google.com

The options used are as follows:

  • -s silent mode, so it doesn't show the progress meter.
  • -A=... specify the user agent you want to use (the example was IE8 on XP).
  • -D - dump header, the dash specifies STDOUT.
  • -o /dev/null redirects the body of the response, so you don't see the html.
  • finally, the url you want to test.

You should see something like this:

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Date: Thu, 20 Jun 2013 15:35:22 GMT
Expires: -1
Cache-Control: private, max-age=0

Since there isn't something built into IE 8 for this, an alternative is to find a standalone copy of wget for Windows - like http://users.ugent.be/~bpuype/wget/.

wget -S <url> will show you the headers (and leave behind a html file, which you can further view or remove). This seems a bit more lightweight than the Fiddler2 method.

Proxomitron (no admin rights required) and Proximodo (a more modern clone, but requires admin rights to install) are standalone software that acts as a proxy between your browser and the internet, they allow you to inspect and modify all headers.

The Network Tab in F12 Tools for IE 11 actually includes Header Information. You have to look under DETAILS. No need to use any 3rd party tool at all.

  1. Press F12 in IE
  2. Go to Network Tab --> DETAILS.

You will see the HTTP header information

IE8 comes with a developer tool, http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd565628(VS.85).aspx

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