i work for a company that's registered as a WASP (or VASP, not really sure which is the official one now) with Glo, MTN and Zain, and we have a messaging gateway connected to these operators. we have clients we resell SMS credits to, and till rather recently we used the web service on our gateway to link our clients to the gateway.
however, due to certain things, my employer recently added the ability to use SMPP binds to our gateway. i cannot be certain until i check using a tool like Wireshark (geek call-out: any other tools that might make the job easier will be appreciated!), but i think that SMPP will consume less bandwidth than using the web service.
anyway, my boss got me and the other developer on our toes with different APIs that allow us build applications that use the gateway. since we already have working knowledge of how to build applications that use the web service, we were stuck with a COM and a Java component which use a custom protocol to talk to the gateway over TCP/IP, the SDK supplied my the gateway vendor, and different components for using SMPP (if you read my Facebook status message about fiddling with Java, i was trying to learn about a certain Java SMPP API).
since i program mostly in C#, i started looking for some component(s) to allow me use SMPP from my applications. i turned up quite a few:
- A library written in C++ with a COM component that uses it: here
- Easy SMPP
- The Devshock .NET SMPP component (For some time the site has been under reconstruction and so the files are no longer available from their site.)
- InetLabs's ALT.SMS.SMPPClient class library
- /n software's IP*Works: here
since what i was doing was trying out stuff, buying a component was out of the question. i'm also kinda biased toward open source, so that kinda kicked out IP*Works (don't get me wrong: IP*Works is probably very good - but i just didn't want it. i might try it out some other time). i got the others and started trying each one out, using a local SMPPSim server (SMPPSim is a Java program that emulates an SMPP server. great for trying out SMS appliactions)
Easy SMPP came with a demo application (there's also an SMPP server on SourceForge that uses it), but i couldn't connect to my local SMPPSim server using it (oddly enough, i could connect to the Easy SMPP gateway with it), so that was a no-go. i'll try it again some other time.
The Devshock component came with zero documentation (bad), no sources (i can live with that), and demo applications (client and server) written in Visual Basic.NET (i dislike VB, something that carried over to VB.NET. also, translating a program from VB.NET to C# without an automated tool is not particularly easy, even if you can do it). somehow, i got a demo application working with it Friday, even tested it on our live gateway.
i should have been satisfied, but the Devshock component has gone two years with no updates (which really shouldn't be a problem - the SMS specification is frozen and the SMS Forum shut down). so this weekend, i tried getting the RoaminSMPP component to work (incidentally, it was updated in October, but the author won't be working on it anymore) at home, and i sort of prefer the way it's structured than the Devshock component (it uses event handlers quite a bit instead of return codes and error messages). it does have its bad sides though. it comes with zero documentation and examples. i had to load up my trusty copy of .NET Reflector (one of the greatest .NET tools ever!) and the sources to find out how to use it (also did that with the Devshock binary, but the InetLab one was obfuscated - only one namespace of five was not).
i'm yet to test the InetLab binary - and yes i know: i probably am being an idiot, since i already have one that works (two, to be precise. why knock it?). still, if i'm giving the component to someone else to use, i may need to recommend the one that's simplest to use. anyway, you already got here. go read something else for now. i've nothing more to say here (far too many acronyms, if you ask me) :D. have fun!