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

FrontlineSMS stopped receiving messages using Samba 75 modem

Hello All

Sorry to bother you with this query. I've had a look on the Ning and see a few similar queries, but don't see one that answers it. Basically, FrontlineSMS has stopped receiving messages. We have had this problem before, and found that typically it happens because we have received a "too long" message. Until this weekend, taking the SIM card out, receiving "stuck" messages onto an ordinary handset, and reconnecting the SIM card, modem and switching FrontlineSMS on again clears the problem, however this trick has also stopped working.

Details - We currently:

- Run FrontlineSMS on a Windows XP computer
- Use Samba 75 GSM modem
- SIM card is not pin protected
- SIM card is registered, has airtime and the window has not expired.

I can send and receive messages from that SIM card just fine when it's in a handset.

I can send messages from the SIM card to a handset using FrontlineSMS.

I have:
- popped sim card in and out a few times
- disconnected modem and reconnected
- connected modem to another usb
- switched computer on and off
- uninstalled and reinstalled frontlinesms

Nothing seems to have resolved this issue.

Aside from FrontlineSMS, I haven't un/installed any software lately or used new hardware, upgraded anything dramatic etc - so I'm not too sure where the problem has come from.

For interest sake, I do wonder if it is at all connected to the recent introduction of MMS in Zimbabwe - This came around December last year, and I have noticed since then we periodically get strange codes into the FrontlineSMS system - I think maybe they are multimedia messages frontline doesnt know what to do with. Could there be any correlation between a "stuck" multimedia message / changed network setting and this non-delivery into FrontlineSMS?

We use FrontlineSMS quite a bit to process subscriber feedback, requests, information etc so it would be great to get any tips on how to fix this. My current work around is to leave it in the modem for a while, where I can hear it getting messages through the speaker, they just don't make it to FrontlineSMS. then periodically I plug the sim card into my handset, because using Nokia PC Suite I can export messages. But this isn't the best solution, clearly.

So, any tips or tricks welcome. Let me know if you need to know anything else to help.

Thanks so much,

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Hi Amanda,

Thank you for your message about this, and sorry to hear that you're having problems with receiving messages. Its not immediately clear what the issue is here. Would you mind sending along your logs to help identify the problem? I will ask our developers to look at your logs/ see if they have any ideas about why this is happening, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.



Hello Florence

Thanks so much for your speedy reply. Find attached the log (I think!) - Let me know if it's not what you're after.




Thanks, Amanda!

I will pass your logs onto our developer team, and we will get back to you as soon as possible on this.



Hi Amanda,

I've spoken with Alex about this, and we're in fact going to need to see more detailed logs from you in order to try to identify this problem. To increase the file size of the logs you send through you will need to do the following:

Modify file in ~/FrontlineSMS/properties/.  Change the line: to and send your logs again.

Once we have your more detailed logs Alex will hopefully be able to identify the issue here. In the meantime, I wonder if you have tried testing a different SIM card with your current modem in order to receive messages in FrontlineSMS? If you are able to receive messages in FrontlineSMS using a different SIM then this could help us isolate the problem.

Let me know if you have any further questions in the meantime.

All the Best


Thanks Flo

That was a good idea - I tried another SIM card and was able to both send and receive no problem.

I then put the SIM card we usually use back in, and again can send but not receive - meanwhile messages to that SIM card can be received on a handset.

I've changed the properties as you requested, but the log then becomes 10MB and I see here there is a 5MB limit. So I will email it to you and Alex for the team for having a look.



Hi Amanda,

Thanks for your reply. Great to hear the SIM card tip helped; this means the problem must be with the SIM you usually use.

If you could send along your more detailed logs that would be helpful (just to let you know, I haven't received them via email as I write this), and from there Alex may be able to provide some more information on getting this problem fixed.



Hi Amanda,

Exactly the same problem. Suddenly my SIM was not able to recieve messages after 8 months continuous use.

Samba 75
Windows 2008 Server VMware Virtual guest on Win2008 Server Host
No PIN protection
Post-Paid SIM


Unattach modem

Reattach modem

System reboot

Put SIM into mobile phone (able to recieve)

Put different SIM into Modem (able to recieve)



Request new SIM with same number from telecom provider (five minutes in line, five minutes admin and new SIM).


System is now working fine, no further changes or configuration needed.


Thanks Paul! And thank you Flo and the FrontlineSMS team for looking into this. At their suggestion we actually got a new SIM card yesterday and tried it out - and as predicted it is working perfectly with FrontlineSMS again. I'm so curious as to why this problem happens? But very pleased that getting a new SIM card with the same phone number solved the problem!



Hi Amanda

Thank you so much for letting us know that your system is now working again - that's great news! \o/ And thank you very much for Paul to offering further advice here, too - its much appreciated.

As Alex suggested via email, the issue was probably a network problem or a problem internal to the SIM card. Interesting to hear this has happened to both you and Paul - I will look out for this issue in future, and let you know if we find out anything more specific on why this happens.

In the meantime, do feel free to keep in touch about your use of FrontlineSMS!

All the Best


Hi Flo,

Have the developers found a solution for this issue yet.

I am already on my third SIM and now I am off to get my fourth after just 6 days.

Once more, the SIM just stops receiving. I am able to send via FLSMS.

If I take the SIM out and put it into a telephone, I can send and receive to my heart's content. If I put the SIM back in the modem and start up FLSMS I can send but can no longer receive.


win 2008

Samba 75



Please Help


Hi Paul,

Thanks for getting in touch. I am really sorry to hear that you continue to have this issue. Our developers are currently testing out a few different options which will hopefully solve this problem. It would be helpful if you could please submit your recent user logs if you haven't done so already, as this may help with identifying the problem too.

I will keep you updated here as soon as we have any further advice, and our apologies for any inconvenience in the meantime.



Hi Flo,

I have sent my logs through already.

I'm sorry to hassle you but It's happened again and now I need to go and get another SIM. At this rate I need to replace the SIM every 48 hours. Can you help me! We have been using FLSMS since July last year with no issues. We went into production in November and are waiting to roll out another 60 phones, however this issue aroze in march and is steadily worsening.



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