Defined magnetization states in magnetic nanotubes could be the basic building blocks for future memory elements. To date, it has been extremely challenging to measure the magnetic states at the single-nanotube level. We investigate the magnetization states of an individual Ni nanotube by measuring the anisotropic magnetoresistance effect at cryogenic temperature. Depending on the magnitude and direction of the magnetic field, we program the nanotube to be in a vortex- or onion-like state near remanence. © 2012 The Royal Society of Chemistry.