Tue. Dec 7th, 2021

It is easy to return random values in Microsoft Excel, however returning random letters may go away you scratching your head. Thankfully, you solely want two features.


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Excel supplies three features for producing random values: RAND(), RANDARRAY(), and RANDBETWEEN(), however there is not any comparable perform for producing random letters. The reality is, most of will not must generate random numbers, however for those who do, you need to achieve this rapidly, proper? Thankfully, by combining a few features, you may generate random letters. On this article, I am going to evaluate these two features after which present you the right way to mix them to get fast outcomes.

SEE: 83 Excel ideas each person ought to grasp (TechRepublic)

I am utilizing Microsoft 365 on a Home windows 10 64-bit system, however you should utilize earlier variations by means of Excel 2007. To your comfort, you may obtain the demonstration .xlsx and .xls information. Excel On-line helps these features.

About RANDBETWEEN() and CHAR() in Excel

You are most likely aware of each of those features already, nevertheless it may by no means happen to you to make use of them collectively. Thankfully, they play properly collectively.

First, let’s evaluate RANDBETWEEN(). This perform returns a random integer worth between two specified values, each time the sheet is calculated. That final half is essential, and we’ll get again to that later. Its syntax,

RANDBETWEEN(backside, prime)

has two required arguments: Backside specifies the small integer that may be returned, and prime specifies the most important integer that may be returned.

CHAR() returns a personality specified by a price, so it is good for translating, which is how we’ll use it. Its syntax,


has just one argument, which on this case, might be a price between 1 and 255. These values signify characters within the system’s character set, which was initially based mostly on ANSI and for our functions in Excel is ASCII decimal. It is uncertain you have to that data, nevertheless it would not harm to find out about it.  

Determine A reveals a sheet of characters returned by the CHAR() perform utilizing the values 65 by means of 90 and 97 by means of 122. We’re not involved with the characters returned by some other worth.

Determine A


  CHAR() makes use of a price between 1 and 255 to return acquainted characters.

Are you able to see the place we’re headed?

Easy methods to mix the 2

At this level, we now have a perform that returns random numbers between two specified values and a perform that converts values to alphabetic characters. By combining them, we will create a perform that returns random letters.

To return an inventory of random upper-case and lower-case letters, enter the next features and duplicate at will:



Determine B reveals my lists. Your lists will not match mine as a result of the outcomes are random.

Determine B


  Mix RANDBETWEEN() and CHAR() to generate random letters. 

You possibly can change the underside and prime values to scale back the variety of letters returned. For instance, for those who wished to return random letters between e and j, you’d use the expression:


First, the RANDBETWEEN() perform returns a random letter between backside and prime. Then, the CHAR() perform interprets that worth into a personality, on this case, letters of the English alphabet.

Returning a single random letter or a sequence of single random letters is pretty simple as soon as you understand how to mix CHAR() and RANDBETWEEN(). How would you come a random set of multiple letter?

Easy methods to concatenate leads to Excel

If you need a sequence of random strings, as proven in Determine C, merely concatenate two features. Let’s suppose you need the primary letter to be uppercase and the second to be lowercase. On this case, you’d use the next perform:


Determine C


  Concatenate two or extra mixed features. 

The primary mixed perform returns a random uppercase letter and the second returns a random lowercase letter. The & character is a concatenation operator. It merely combines the outcomes of each features; it would not complete values.

You might mix a number of mixtures for every kind of strings.

Easy methods to convert to literal values in Excel

Earlier, I discussed that RANDBETWEEN() calculates each time you calculate that workbook. Which means each time you enter something or press F9, these features return completely different characters. Which may not matter, but when it does, you will need to convert the outcomes into literal values. To rapidly convert features to their literal values, do the next:

  1. Choose the values.
  2. Press Ctrl + C to repeat them to the Clipboard.
  3. Within the Clipboard group (on the Dwelling tab), click on the Paste dropdown and select Values (V) within the Paste Values part. Doing so will change the features with their outcomes.

Keep tuned

This straightforward mixture yields versatile outcomes—you may randomly return as many letters as you want. In a future article, we’ll use RANDBETWEEN() to generate random content material.

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