The draft sequences of whole genomes are being published at an ever-increasing pace, thus providing access to the human genomic sequence and, more recently, the mouse sequence. Genomes of the invertebrates are also becoming available. Now that the genomic DNA of mammalian species is available, an old problem can be tackled with renewed vigour: mammalian promoter prediction. Gene promoters have proved elusive for more than a decade, despite their pivotal role in gene regulation. Recently, however, several new developments have made it possible to make meaningful large-scale predictions. This paper reviews the methods used for the prediction of mammalian, mostly human, promoters.