SMS and MMS Notifications with PHP
Today we're going to get your server to automatically sound the (textual) alarm when something goes wrong. Using PHP and Laravel, we'll light up the phones of all of your server administrators when your code raises an exception.
Clone the application and head to the application's README to see how to run the app locally.
See how EMC uses Twilio SMS to send IT alerts to 68,000 employees.
Let's get started!
Click the button below to start the journey.
List Your Server Administrators - And Other Lucky Folks
Here we create a list of people who should be notified if a server error occurs.
The only essential piece of data we need is a
phone_number for each administrator.
Next up, we'll see how to set up the Twilio client.
Configure the Twilio Client
To send a message, we'll need to create a Twilio REST client, which requires reading our
TWILIO_AUTH_TOKEN and a
TWILIO_NUMBER from environmental variables.
TWILIO_NUMBER needs not be a real number. It can be any number of your choosing and is mainly used to populate the
To field in the outgoing message.
The values for your account SID and Auth Token come from the Twilio console:
Next let's see how to handle application exceptions.
Handle Application Exceptions
Each time an exception is raised anywhere in a Laravel application an
TwilioExceptionHandler will handle it. (Appropriate name!)
This is where we hook our SMS sending code. It's important to call
parent so the framework can do its regular error handling as well.
Next up let's see how to create a custom message.
Create a Custom Alert Message
Here we create an alert message to send out via text message.
You might also decide to include a picture with your alert message... perhaps a screenshot of the application when the crash happened? A meme image to calm everyone down?
Let's now take a look at how to load the list of administrators.
Read the Administrators from the JSON File
We read the lucky people from our JSON file and send alert messages to each of them with the private
Now let's look at how to send a text message.
Send a Text Message
There are three parameters needed to send an SMS using the Twilio REST API:
After the message is sent, we print out the phone number we're texting. US and Canadian phone numbers can also send an image with the message. (Other countries will have a shortened URL appended pointing to the image.)
That's all, folks!
We've just implemented an automated server notification system that can push out server alerts if (ahem, when) anything goes wrong. Now let's look at some other great features you might like to add.
Where to Next?
PHP and Twilio - such a great combination. Here are just two other excellent tutorials for you to try out:
Increase the security of your login system by verifying a user's mobile phone in addition to their password.
Send your customers a text message when they have an upcoming appointment - this tutorial shows you how to do it from a background job.
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Need some help?
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