Allow to send token email (invite or reminder) via PHP cli .
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Send token email via PHP Cli

Allow to send token email (invite or reminder) via PHP cli . This allow to use crontab or Scheduled task to send email.


  • This plugin is only tested with LimeSurvey 2.06. Tested on 2.50 and 3.7.0 build (always use latest build if possible),
  • In some LimeSurvey version : you need to manually create the ./application/runtime to use CFileLogRoute (See LimeSurvey manual).


  • Go to your LimeSurvey Directory (version up to 2.06, build 150729)
  • Clone in plugins/sendMailCron directory

Via ZIP dowload

  • Get the file (If you use LimeSurvey 2.54.4 or up)
  • Extract : unzip
  • Move the directory to plugins/ directory inside LimeSUrvey
  • If you use LimeSurvey 2.54.3 or below : use


  • When activated the plugin settings are updated to use the actual url for email. This can be updated at any time
  • You can choose
    • Max number of email to send
    • Batch size on each command
    • Minimum delay between invitation and first reminder
    • Minimum delay between each reminders
    • Same and more in each surveys setting
    • If plugin validate the email (this allow only one email by token)
    • The cron type list to be allowed in survey settings
  • To test the plugin you need to call it via PHP Cli php yourlimesurveydir/application/commands/console.php plugin cron sendMailCronSimulate=1
  • This line can be added in your crontab or Task Scheduler
  • Per survey settings are found on Tools menu

Usage of moment

In global plugin settings, admlin user can add a list of moment for sending email. This moment can be choose by survey administrator in the survey settings of the plugins.

A good solution is to use clear name for moment, for example morning, weekend with corresponding cron command. The moment are added in the command with sendMailCronType= : php yourlimesurveydir/application/commands/console.php plugin cron sendMailCronType=morning

Usage of attribute

You can use token attribute for date/time, number and delay for sending email. Plugion global settings let admin user choose defaut attribute number, and you can update or set it in survey plugin settings.

The token is tested just before send email, then it mus be selected before by the survey settings. For each test we have:

  • If the attribute didn't exist or is empty : send the email
  • If the attribute is not an integer : don't send the email (warning 01 is not an integer).
  • If the attribute is an integer : test is done.

Maximm email is tested including the invitation. Then if you set 1 to the attribute : only the invitation was sent. With 0 : even invitation was not sent. For the delay : compare is done including the time, then it can take one day more if you send a lot of email.


The plugin accept optionnal parameters in the command line

  • debug level from 0 : nothing is shown except errors to 3 all action are shown sendMailCronDebug=3 (integer, default 1)
  • simulate action done by the plugin : don't send any email or update token : sendMailCronSimulate=1 (boolean, default false)
  • disable all action done by the plugin in command line : sendMailCronDisable=1 (boolean, default false)
  • cronType of actual task : sendMailCronType=test (string|null, default null)

Some example

  • php yourlimesurveydir/application/commands/console.php plugin cron sendMailCronDebug=0 nothing is printed to screen except errors. By default show tested survey and action, and number of email send for each survey
  • php yourlimesurveydir/application/commands/console.php plugin cron sendMailCronDebug=3 sendMailCronSimulate=1 just to see what happen before put the command in the crontab, with all the trace of the plugin


Plugin use 2 system for logging :

  • echo at console what happen : then you can use cron system to send an email, or test the plugin : error and info was echoed. Use sendMailCronDebug to choose what you want : the 4 states was
    • 0 (error): only error are shown
    • 1 (base information): show warning and basic information (number of email sent, batch size done …)
    • 2 (information) : shown more information (deactivated survey, day deactivated …)
    • 3 (debug/trace) : request done, all individual email information
  • use Yii::log : 4 state : error, info and trace. Loggued as application.plugins.sendMailCron.
    • The log file is, by default ./tmp/runtime/application.log or ./application/runtime/application.log before LimeSurvey version 2.57.2
    • To have more information on mail error : you must enable 'SMTP debug mode' in LimeSurvey instance global settings

Exemple of logging system:

    'log' => array(
        'routes' => array(
            'fileError' => array(
                'class' => 'CFileLogRoute',
                'levels' => 'warning, error',
            'sendMailCron' => array(
                'class' => 'CFileLogRoute',
                'levels' => 'info, warning, error',


The plugin dispatch two custom events.

  • When the cron finished to sent emails for a survey of a specific type (invite / reminder) finishSendEmailsForSurveyTypeCron
  • When the cron finished to sent emails for a survey finishSendEmailForSurveyCron


Issue and merge request are welcome on framagit or github.

Translation can be done via Glotpress of Sondages Pro plugin

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