FrontlineSMS let users send, receive and manage SMS over a mobile network.

FrontlineSMS data to ODK aggregate using external command

Hi Everyone,

This is my first ever post on any forum actually, so please let me know if I am going about things in the wrong way and perhaps bear with me as I learn my way around php and FLSMS.

I have a question regarding sending data to ODK aggregate from frontlineSMS via HTTP trigger. I have scoured the forums here for an entire day, straight, to no avail :´(, . I was hoping someone could point to me to a useful resource.

I am working on research for a pilot project based in Malawi, to improve volunteer medical reporting in rural areas. I was hoping to produce a prototype of the project for my personal learning as well as for documenting my research. 

I downloaded a php script to process sms's from ( The page describes how to integrate FLSMS and ODK Aggregate. I however at the moment, have very poor PHP skills and a limited understanding of FLSMS. I am eager and willing to learn though, I have started myself on php over at w3schools and and hope to improve in time.

In the meantime though I am attempting to customize the php script but would love to see an example of how the data arrays are addressed with FLSMS formfield names . (Even just the one array line would be of great help for me to play around with ^_^, and start reducing errors)

I realize the FLSMS team can't help with php on this site but I was hoping someone would have attempted to integrate ODK Aggregate with FLSMS before and could point me in the right direction.

Also, is there any and if so where can I find documentation regarding the formfields that FLSMS uses, to name my arrays in the PHP script. I am hoping for some extensive documentation for FLSMS and how it stores data. 

Thank you for your patience, apologies for my ignorance and look forward to hearing from you.

Again please note this my first time posting so any guidelines on what not do would also be greatly appeciated. Thank you again.

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Forgot to add my setup:


Xampp with pear and xml serializer pre-packaged,

windows 7

ODK Aggregate google app engine instance.

Thank you

Hi Anthony K,

Thanks so much for getting in touch, and for posting on our forum! It's great to hear that the FrontlineSMS community forum is the place you've chosen for your first post! \o/ You've provided an excellent amount of detail, so thanks for sharing.

As you point out, our FrontlineSMS developers cannot necessarily help directly with writing PHP script. I will pass your post onto them nonetheless, just in case they can help out in some way. I will also reach out to a few others who have helped out with PHP on the community before, and see if they're able to be of assistance.

Your project sounds really interesting. I wonder, have you heard of Medic Mobile (previously FrontlineSMS:Medic)? I ask as they've done a lot of work previously on m-health using FrontlineSMS in Malawi, so thought their work could be of interest to you.



Hi Florence, 

Thank you for the warm welcome! And for your prompt response, I really appreciate you're passing my post on and look forward to any help the community can give me. 

I actually have heard of Medic Mobile and their work in Malawi, I hope to be meeting one of the team members in the coming week. : ) But in the meanwhile, now that I have the dev bug I will keep working on understanding the script. 

Thank you and kind regards! 


Hi Anthony,


Not quite sure where to start, but:

* you can test the FrontlineSMS URLs within your browser - point it to an address like http://localhost:8080/send/sms/01234567890/Hello how are you/


* you can call this URL from PHP, e.g. <? file_get_contents("http://localhost:8080/send/sms/01234567890/Hello how are you/"); ?>

* you can substitute different values into the URL in PHP, e.g.
$phoneNumber = "1234567890"
$message = "Hello how are you"




Hope this helps!



Hi Alex thanks for this, sorry for the super late response.  I realized I had a few things wrong when I first posted, firstly I am using Patientview beta/FLSMS I ended up using Mysql for my db and using a Mysql reporting tool for statistics, which seems to work fine.

However as always I have another issue and I am not sure where to look for any documentation or help with mapping submitted data to the actual patients. Do I have to create a mapping in the manage forms tab on the administration tab? Do you know of any "beta" documentation for PV/FLSMS that goes into detail regarding field mapping?

Thanks and regards,


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