Setup a REST Web API for the SMS Server

The SMS Server is a Windows server application for sending, receiving and automatically processing SMS messages. But what if you want to access the SMS Server from a Linux system? Or directly from your website?

One option is to insert new messages into the database directly. However, this has a lot of drawbacks when you want to do so over the internet. So the next most obvious solution would be to setup a REST Web API for the SMS Server.

 
Web API for the SMS Server
 

The case for a WEB API

Out of the box the SMS Server has a dedicated API for integrating the SMS Server with any type of back-end software. This API is COM based, which means that it’s easy to use for just about any language that can run on Windows.

But to use the COM based API you do need to have the SMS Server client tools installed and connected to your central SMS server. Having a Web API does away with this requirement. You can now connect to the SMS Server from anywhere without needing anything else to be installed.

Having a Web API available can be very useful in a number of situations:

  • Sending SMS from your website
  • Sending from a Linux operating system
  • Offer an easy to use HTTP interface to your customers
  • Sending from a different server in your network

How to setup a WEB API

You can setup a basic REST Web API in a pinch using only the tools that are available by default on a Windows Server installation. As long as you are running Windows Server 2012 or newer you don’t need any other software.

Follow this how-to to find out exactly how to setup a REST Web API for the SMS Server.

If you need any help setting this up, please contact us.

When most people think of an SMSC or SMS Center they think of expensive hardware and huge licensing and consultancy fees. While this has been the case for a long time, it all changed with the introduction of the Auron SMS Server. This post explains how to setup an SMSC using the Auron SMS Server.

The SMS Server is an exceptionally versatile SMS framework for setting up every kind of SMS application. Hospitals use it to remind patients of their appointments and radio stations use it to interact with their listeners. While at the same time more and more SMS operators use it for their core infrastructure as well.

Benefits of having your own SMSC

An SMSC is a system that accepts incoming SMPP connections from, and routes SMS messages to SMS providers. This is useful in the following cases:

  • Always use the most economic route to deliver messages
  • Aggregate multiple low-volume SMS streams into one high-volume subscription
  • Be a nexus in an application that needs to trace all messages sent
  • Etc..
 
SMS Center - Overview
SMS Center – Overview
 

An SME is a Short Message Entity. This is any client that is able to connect to the SMSC. The SMS Server is an SME as well as an SMSC.

Packed with features and fully customizable

The SMS Server is perfect for setting up a fully functional and secure SMSC with little effort and at a very low cost. This how-to details all of the steps of how to setup an SMSC using the SMS Server.

The SMSC in this article has the following features:

  • Allow any number of clients to connect using SMPP
  • Route to an SMPP provider
  • Secure communication through TLS
  • Support Unicode and Multipart messages
  • Full support for delivery reports
  • No plain-text passwords by using hash functions instead.

On top of this all, the SMS Server SMSC is fully customizable.

The SMS Server uses triggers to customize the behavior of the SMSC. These triggers are scripts that are automatically generated but can be completely customized after the fact.

Need help setting things up? Contact us!

Among a host of new features the SMS Server 2020R2 now introduces full campaign management.

With campaign management you can now configure customized bulk SMS or E-mail mailings using any data source. Possible data sources include MS Excel, MS Access or any external database. Campaigns can run either manually and interactively from the SMS Server manager or automatically from the task scheduler or from a trigger.

SMS Server 2020R2 - Campaign View
SMS Server 2020R2 – Campaign View

With adding support for campaigns a lot of common use cases are now a lot easier to achieve:

  • Send out incidental mailings to your subscribers to notify them of changes and/or offers
  • Automatically send out reminders to coworkers, customers or patients to notify them of appointments or alerts
  • Connect into most 3rd party systems to use the contact information stored there
  • Use any other information a 3rd party has stored as part of your E-mail or SMS message as well.

In addition to campaign management the SMS Server also adds some improvements to triggers and channels. Most notably:

Triggers now support include files. This mean that you can now have common files that define common functions or definitions that can be access by multiple trigger scripts.

SMS Server 2020R2 - Trigger Script
SMS Server 2020R2 – Trigger Script

Channels now have a connected, connecting, disconnected status that is visible in the manager. The SMPP Server channel can also show how many clients are connected an exactly which clients are connected at any time.

SMS Server 2020R2 - Channel View
SMS Server 2020R2 – Channel View

But there’s still more. Please read the release notes to get an overview of all of the new features, upgrades and fixes in the SMS Server 2020R2.

Or better yet, download the 30 day fully functional trial version to get the best idea of what the new version can do for you.

The SMS Server as well as the SMS Components can now send out free SMS messages. Both products now have connections to the Auron test and demonstration gateway preconfigured at installation.

The Auron test and demonstration gateway allows each new trial user to send out 10 free SMS messages. This way you can install the trial version and start building your application right away. No extra software, devices or subscriptions needed.

Should 10 free SMS messages not be enough then please contact us with your generated System ID and we can add more credits to your account.

SMPP Client channel - Connection settings
SMPP Client channel – Connection settings

To use your free SMS messages in an SMS Server trial just create a new SMPP channel and keep the default connection settings.

When trying out the SMS Component you will find the test and demonstration settings already setup in most example projects.

SMS Component - C# SMPP Example
SMS Component – C# SMPP Example

The test and demonstration gateway itself is of course powered by the SMS Server.

The Auron SMPP Simulator, or SMSC Simulator, is an easy-to-use windows based tool for testing your SMPP client software. The C# forms application is used to test more complicated and more demanding SMPP client scenarios like:

  • Throttling behavior under high load
  • Handling of delivery reports statuses
  • Error handling
  • Test different character encodings as well as multipart concatenation options
  • Test secure (TLS) connections as well as IPv6 connections and multi-stack options.
  • Etc..
Auron SMPP Simulator

By making the source code available on GitHub we hope to achieve the following:

  • Show a broader audience the strength of our SMS Component
  • Demonstrate how to use the SMPP Server option in the SMS Component
  • Encourage feedback on the SMPP Simulator

Of course, you may just want to use an SMPP Simulator without having to compile it from source first. That’s why we’re still offering SMPP Simulator setup on our download page.

The SMPP Simulator is powered by the Auron SMS Component. In ‘freeware’ mode the SMPP Simulator will inject a small ‘- Auron Software’ ad into every 15th SMS message sent. To prevent this ad please purchase an SMS Component professional license.



You can now integrate the Auron Software components into your project without leaving Visual Studio.

Both the SMS component as well as the E-mail component now have their own NuGet package.

For example, to add the SMS Component to your C# project from Visual Studio you can follow these steps:

Start by clicking on Tools -> NuGet Package Manager -> Manage NuGet Packages for Solutions


Open NuGet package manager in Visual Studio

Next select ‘Browse’ and type ‘axsms’ in the search bar and click ‘Install’

Select the AxSms package

You will get a pop-up to confirm the change that you are making. Click on ‘OK’ here.

Click on ‘OK’

Next your the package is installed and you are greeted with a friendly message from your vendor.

Installation successful

Finally you are ready to start using the SMS Component!

Time to start using the SMS Component

These same steps apply for installing the E-mail component. With the exception that you will have to type ‘axemail’ in the search box instead of ‘axsms’.

We’re starting off the new year with a big announcement: Auron Software has acquired ActiveXperts Software subsidiary ActiveXperts Messaging B.V.. ActiveXperts Messaging is an internationally recognized brand, known primarily for its SMS and E-mail software.

With this acquisition the following products are transferred from ActiveXperts to Auron:

These new products all align perfectly with the long term vision of Auron Software of becoming a market leader in communication and messaging software.

This acquisition is particularly exiting for me as CEO of Auron Software. Before starting Auron Software and for a while after starting Auron Software I have been heavily involved in the development of all three of these products. During the last decade I am proud to say that I have seen these product grow into maturity.

With these SMS and E-mail products in ActiveXperts we have been able to empower a large and diverse customer base. Now that the products are transferred to Auron Software I hope that we can continue to do the same.

We are very exited to start putting all of our effort into the continued development of these products.

Today we’re launching the new Auron Software brand identity together with a complete overhaul of the website. A lot of time and thought went into the final result and we’re very happy with this result. In this post I’ll explain some of the reasoning behind the current brand identity and website design.

Brand identity

The new brand now contains a logo as well as the name of our company. The logo is an important part of our identity because:

  • It’s instantly recognizable
  • It contains a lot of information about our company.
The composition of the Auron Software logo

The new Auron logo is actually a composition of some important elements that represent Auron Software:

  • Interconnected network nodes that represent messaging and communication
  • The network nodes are rotated to resemble the Auron ‘A’ shape
  • A 3D cube shape to indicate solidity and robustness

Website

After having established our new brand we need a website to go with this. We are currently mostly a consultancy and software-engineering company. But this is going to change soon. We’re exited to say that we’re about to add some more products to our portfolio. More on this in another announcement in the near future. Suffice it to say that the structure of our website becomes increasingly more important.

This is an important reason for us to choose WordPress as our site backend. Which makes it very easy to add new content and maintain existing content. Together with some clever custom theming I think we’ve create a website that both has a modern look and is very easy to navigate.

The most important case in point being our Knowledge base. The knowledge base has a very easy to navigate hierarchical structure. This will be able to contain both all our howto’s, installation instructions, etc. as well as our full API reference documentation for each product.

Let us know

All in all we’re very happy about the result. But ultimately the website was built to service our customers. So please, if you find any problems or inconveniences in navigating the site. Please let us know.