On this page I will describe the way I went trough to configure an sms gateway using a laptop, huawei modem, falcom A2D-1 or the option Globetrotter hardware using the open source software kannel & playsms.
The main goal of this project was related to the scouting movement in Belgium I'm active. We wanted to interrogate all of our members who were on a start weekend of the next scouting year. To do this we had the idea to use the sms communication channel. This because almost every youngster has the possibility to send sms messages without a big effort.
To achieve this I searched on the internet and found the playsms software. Using this software you can easily add an interactive flow to communicate with people using sms. We used the sms quiz where we added some questions with keywords were people could answer to and we replied with a next question.
As mobile provider we choose for Mobile Vikings a belgium operator with an open-mind. They were very helpfull when I contacted them to see if they could monitor some mobile traffic for my sim.
But before this software can handle your sms messages they have to be captured and received using a SIM card and pushed to the software. This step in the whole process can be done by kannel.
Process using CentOS 6.3 minimal installation
Install some required dependency packages:
# yum install gcc libxml2-devel mysql-server wvdial vim
Looking for the modem:
# wvdialconf /etc/wvdial.conf Found a modem on **/dev/ttyUSB0**
Before starting configuring the services which were going to communicate with the modem I wanted to make sure I could send text messages with it. To check that functionality I installed the minicom serial communication program:
# yum install minicom # minicom
In this terminal you can control the modem using AT commands. A nice tutorial about those commands is available on qualityguru.
Steps for entering the PIN.
AT+CPIN=XXXX OK AT+CPIN? +CPIN: READY OK
Checking if the SMS center is configured:
AT+CSCA? +CSCA: "+32XXXXXXXXX",145 OK
If not configured, configure it by:
The steps for sending a text message:
AT+CMGF=1 OK AT+CMGS="+32XXXXXXXXX" > This is the text message. > (CTRL-Z) +CMGS: XX OK
If you received the message on your phone its working obviously and we can start configuring kannel.
If not, check the troubleshoot page of qualityguru for some common mistakes.
At the moment of writing this post the last stable version is 1.4.3. Using CentOS 6.4 you can install kannel from the epel repository:
# yum install kannel
Or you can choose to compile it from source:
# wget http://www.kannel.org/download/1.4.3/gateway-1.4.3.tar.gz # tar zxvf gateway-1.4.3.tar.gz -C /usr/local/src/ # cd /usr/local/src/gateway-1.4.3/ # mkdir -p /etc/kannel # ./configure --prefix=/etc/kannel # make # make install
I installed the kannel service from the repository and created a symlink from /etc/kannel.conf to the /etc/kannel/kannel.conf so the playsms service could read the configuration afterwards:
# mkdir /etc/kannel/ # ln -s /etc/kannel.conf /etc/kannel/kannel.conf
Once you configured your device you start kannel by starting the kannel service:
# service kannel start
If everything went well you can see that there are 2 services started:
# ps aux | grep kannel kannel 9611 1.9 0.1 750424 6684 ? Sl 13:14 2:37 /usr/sbin/bearerbox /etc/kannel.conf kannel 9636 0.0 0.1 674228 4676 ? Sl 13:14 0:00 /usr/sbin/smsbox /etc/kannel.conf
In the /var/log/kannel/kannel.log file you can follow the state of the kannel service. I struggled a bit with this to find out the reset string for the modems I used. By searching the internet you can find the particular string for your device.
For example the option one I found on enterprisemobiletoday.com by try & error in the minicom terminal.
I used different sorts of hardware and listed the specific kannel.conf files here under per device.
In the first phase I used a huawei USB dongle:
#CORE group = core admin-port = 13000 admin-password = #PASSWORD status-password = #PASSWORD log-file = "/var/log/kannel/kannel.log" log-level = 0 access-log = "/var/log/kannel/access.log" smsbox-port = 13001 store-type = file store-location = "/var/log/kannel/kannel.store"* #SMSC MODEM GSM group = smsc smsc = at connect-allow-ip = 127.0.0.1 port = 13013 host = "localhost" smsc-id = Huawei modemtype = Huawei device = /dev/ttyUSB0 speed = 9600 sms-center = "+32486000005" my-number = "+324XXXXXXXX" pin = XXXX group = modems id = huawei name = huawei detect-string = "huawei" init-string = "AT+CNMI=2,1,0,0,0;+CMEE=1" #SMSBOX SETUP group = smsbox bearerbox-host = 127.0.0.1 bearerbox-port = 130X01 sendsms-port = 13131 sendsms-chars = "0123456789+" global-sender = 00324XXXXXXXX log-file = "/var/log/kannel/smsbox.log" log-level = 0 access-log = "/var/log/kannel/access.log" #SEND-SMS USERS group = sendsms-user username = #USERNAME password = #PASSWORD user-allow-ip = "\*.\*.\*.\*" #SMS SERVICE group = sms-service keyword = default accept-x-kannel-headers = true #accepted-smsc = Huawei accepted-smsc = at2 max-messages = 0 assume-plain-text = true catch-all = true get-url = "http://localhost/playsms/index.php?app=call&cat=gateway&plugin=kannel&access=geturl&t=%t&q=%q&a=%a"
During the event was in the possession of a falcom A2D-1 gateway which was connected from serial to usb:
group = core admin-port = 13000 admin-password = playsms log-file = "/var/log/kannel/kannel.log" log-level = 0 access-log = "/var/log/kannel/access.log" smsbox-port = 13001 store-type = file store-location = "/var/log/kannel/kannel.store"* group = smsc smsc = at modemtype = falcom device = /dev/ttyUSB0 my-number = "+324XXXXXXXX" sms-center = "+32486000005" pin = XXXX group = modems id = falcom name = "Falcom" detect-string = "Falcom" reset-string = "AT+CFUN=1" #SMSBOX SETUP group = smsbox bearerbox-host = localhost sendsms-port = 13131 log-file = "/var/log/kannel/smsbox.log" log-level = 0 access-log = "/var/log/kannel/access.log" #SEND-SMS USERS group = sendsms-user username = #USER password = #PASSWORD #SMS SERVICE group = sms-service keyword = default accept-x-kannel-headers = true max-messages = 0 assume-plain-text = true catch-all = true get-url = "http://127.0.0.1:2080/playsms/index.php?app=call&cat=gateway&plugin=kannel&access=geturl&t=%t&q=%q&a=%a"
After the event I had to give back the falcom and got my hands on an option globetrotter HSPDA card connected on a pcmci slot of the laptop I configured as CentOS server:
#CORE group = core admin-port = 13000 admin-password = playsms status-password = playsms log-file = /var/log/kannel/kannel.log log-level = 0 access-log = /var/log/kannel/access.log smsbox-port = 13001 store-type = file store-location = /var/log/kannel/kannel.store #SMSC MODEM GSM group = smsc smsc = at connect-allow-ip = 127.0.0.1 port = 13013 host = “localhost” smsc-id = Option modemtype = Option device = /dev/ttyUSB0 speed = 9600 sms-center = "32486000005" my-number = "324XXXXXXXX" pin = XXXX # If modemtype=auto, try everyone and defaults to this one group = modems id = generic name = "Generic Modem" reset-string = "AT&F" #SMSBOX SETUP group = smsbox bearerbox-host = 127.0.0.1 bearerbox-port = 13001 sendsms-port = 13131 sendsms-chars = “0123456789+” global-sender = 0032485550261 log-file = “/var/log/kannel/smsbox.log” log-level = 0 access-log = “/var/log/kannel/access.log” #SEND-SMS USERS group = sendsms-user username = playsms password = playsms #SMS SERVICE group = sms-service keyword = default accept-x-kannel-headers = true accepted-smsc = at max-messages = 0 assume-plain-text = true catch-all = true
For the playsms service we need to have a webserver configured. You can use every webserver you want, I tried with xampp and lighttpd.
During the event I used with the xampp web service because it was working after all by following the howto of kasrut.
After the event was finished I migrated to lighttpd mainly because I already had some other applications running on that service.
# wget http://nchc.dl.sourceforge.net/project/xampp/XAMPP%20Linux/1.7.4/xampp-linux-1.7.4.tar.gz # tar zxvf xampp-linux-1.7.4.tar.gz -C /opt/ # cd /opt/lampp # ./lampp start
For the installation of lighttpd I refer to a clear tutorial on howtoforge
playsms is a free and open-source gateway. I used this software to configure a big quiz to set up a cool and trendy communication flow between people and our scouting movement.
I used the git repository to easily update my instance to the newest releases:
# cd /usr/local/src/ # git clone firstname.lastname@example.org:antonraharja/playSMS.git # cd playSMS/
Creation of the necessary directories and copy the web files to the webserver directory
# mkdir -p /var/www/html/playsms /var/spool/playsms /var/log/playsms /var/lib/playsms # cp -r usr/local/src/playSMS/web/* /var/www/html/playsms/
Creation of a mysql db and user:
# mysql -u root -p # Enter password: # mysql> create database playsms; Query OK, 1 row affected (0.00 sec) # mysql> grant usage on *.* to USER@localhost identified by ‘PASSWORD’; Query OK, 0 rows affected (0.00 sec) # mysql> grant all privileges on playsms.* to USER@localhost ; Query OK, 0 rows affected (0.00 sec) # mysql> quit # msql -u root -p playsms < /usr/local/src/playSMS/db/playsms.sql
Next step is to configure the playsms web service. Therefore follow those steps:
# cd /var/www/html/playsms # cp config-dist.php config.php
Edit this config.php file to your own needs.
Now we configured the parameters we can start to install the services:
# mkdir -p /etc/default /usr/local/bin # cp /usr/local/src/playSMS/daemon/linux/etc/playsms /etc/default/ # cp /usr/local/src/playSMS/daemon/linux/bin/* /usr/local/bin/ # vim /etc/default/playsms # edit the paths to your environment ones
I've used rc.local to start the service at boot:
# vim /etc/rc.d/rc.local
and put /usr/local/bin/playsmsd_start at the end of that file
Next I configured 2 new aliases in my ~/.bashrc to easily start and stop the service:
alias playsms-start='/usr/local/bin/playsmsd_start' alias playsms-stop='/usr/local/bin/playsmsd_stop'
By re-logging in you can start the service by:
And check if the necessary services are started:
# ps aux | grep playsms root 7735 0.0 0.0 103236 868 pts/4 S+ 15:52 0:00 grep playsms root 21845 0.0 0.0 106312 1660 pts/4 S 12:25 0:06 /bin/bash ./playsmsd /var/www/html/playsms root 21847 0.0 0.0 106184 1536 pts/4 S 12:25 0:05 /bin/bash ./sendsmsd /var/www/html/playsms
- Finally you can browse http://<your web server IP>/playsms/ and login using
- username: admin password: admin
Where you need to configure kannel in the menu: Gateway > Manage Kannel > kannel (Inactive) (click here to activate) and adopt the parameters to the ones you configured in kannel.conf
After filling in your preferences you should be able to send and receive messages through this nifty web console.
(TIP: Using twice the same keyword for a quiz resulted in the fact that only this word is needed to send to the sms server to start the interactivity)
Have fun with it!