I'm working on a Drupal site that includes a view showing unanswered SMS messages. The view shows activities of the Inbound SMS type that have not been revised or deleted, plus a custom PHP filter that restricts it to inbound SMS activities from contacts who don't have an outbound SMS activity with a later date.

The client would to be able to mark off messages that they don't need to answer, and have those no longer show up in the list - basically a way of marking them as read and not in need of a reply. I tried to add a custom field for this to the Inbound SMS activity type - but it doesn't show up as an option! When I choose activities under the "used for" dropdown on the form for creating a custom field, it brings up a second list of specific activity type, but Inbound SMS isn't on it.

Does anyone know if there's any way to get this activity type to show a custom field? Or failing that, any other ideas for how to provide this functionality (a checkbox for marking SMS messages as read, which can then be used as a filter for the view)?

2 Answers 2


How about adding another activity status? Like "Unread" or "Read".

Depending on how skilled you are, maybe it is possible to have inbound sms set to "Unread" as default. Then your staff could change it to "completed" when they have read it.

If not, you could add the activity status "Read" and then change the status from "Completed" to "Read".

In both ways, you could have a report showing only the default activity status, and after they have changed the status, it diseappers from the report.

  • Thanks for your reply! But I don't seem to be able to find a way (in the CiviCRM UI, at least) to add a new activity status - is there a way that I just haven't spotted, or it would it need to be done directly via the database or something?
    – spidersilk
    Commented Apr 28, 2015 at 22:31
  • @spidersilk You can certainly do it in the CiviCRM UI. There is a menu for it. If you look into this page I just found, it is really well explained there: emphanos.com/new/civicrm-tutorial-post-1
    – Flying
    Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 4:49
  • The explanation on the page I linked to is incorrect in stating that the menu is not listed in the admin menu, because it is there. It is called Options I think (sorry I am not on an English install) Easiest acces is yourdomain.com/civicrm/admin/options?reset=1
    – Flying
    Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 5:01
  • Perfect, thank you! For anyone else who may be looking, in an English install it's Administer > System Settings > Option Groups (I found it in the menu only after going there via the link you posted).
    – spidersilk
    Commented Apr 29, 2015 at 14:19

For the benefit of anyone else who wants to add custom fields to an activity type that isn't in the list: You could create the custom group using the API, either using the explorer or drush. For example:

drush cvapi CustomGroup.create extends=Activity extends_entity_column_value=46 title="SMS testing"

where 46 is the activity type ID of Inbound SMS on my system.

  • It won't list the activity type in the 'Type' column on the list of custom groups if it's one that doesn't appear in the list, but it'll still be saved.
    – DaveFF
    Commented May 15, 2015 at 10:50

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