Scheduled Tasks to send SMS txt message reminders
Posted by Sinclair Hughes, Last modified by Jane Hughes on 27 January 2022 02:18 PM

Configuring SMS to send txt message appointment reminders

SPM & PHM can send appointment reminders to patients and also other ad-hoc messages.

The Windows Task Scheduler needs to be configured to run the SMS Sender application to automatically send out SMS (text) messages. These are messages that have been queued, i.e. appointment reminders.  Ad hoc messages are sent immediately.

The task must be created on a computer that runs the Incisive application as it relies on the ODBC entries to connect to the database. Ideally this would run on the server, or a workstation that will not be turned off.

The scheduled task must be created with a Windows User Account where the password will not expire. 

Check that you can run the task from the command line before commencing to set up the scheduled task: 

Weekday SMS Sender

Create a new task.


Security options

    • Run whether the user is logged on or not.
    • Run with the highest privileges.


8.00 a.m. (or later, ask the practice)



Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday

Stop task if it runs longer than:

15 minutes




SMSSender.exe needs to be set to run from the program directory (normally c:\spmwin).

Add arguments:

Note if 'auto' is not included the 'Send Queued Messages' command will not execute

    • Wake the computer up to run the task.
    • Allow the task to be run on demand.
    • Stop the task if it runs for longer than 1 hour.
    • If the running task does not end when requested force it to stop.

Weekend SMS Sender

This task should be created to run once on a Saturday and Sunday, normally late morning or early afternoon. If it is set to run too early, it may wake some people up! Ensure that the correct usage of AM or PM is selected depending on the time set. 
Create a new task with the same settings as the Weekday SMS sender, setting the task to run only on a Saturday and Sunday. No repeat is required.



10 a.m.
(Ask the practice what time they would like the messages sent on a Saturday and Sunday).



Recur every 1 week on:

Saturday / Sunday

Stop task if it runs longer than:

15 minutes

Receiving SMS messages

A third scheduled task needs to be set up for the SMS Sender application to poll more frequently for incoming messages.

"SMSSender.exe /replies"

This task should probably be run every 15 minutes and will poll the Provider's SMS account, then retrieve them.