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Random Numbers in a Range

Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Random Numbers in a Range.

Excel provides a power function that allows you to easily return a random integer number within a range. For instance, you can use the RANDBETWEEN function to return a random integer number between 50 and 99, or between 25 and 0. The syntax for the function is as follows:

=RANDBETWEEN(lower, upper)

All you need to do is provide the lower and upper values. If the first number you provide is actually higher than the second number, then RANDBETWEEN returns a #NUM! error.

The RANDBETWEEN function is a part of the Analysis Toolpak. If you get an error when you try to use the function, you can make sure the toolpak is loaded in this manner:

  1. Choose Add-Ins from the Tools menu. Excel displays the Add-Ins dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  2. Figure 1. The Add-Ins dialog box.

  3. Make sure the Analysis Toolpak check box is selected.
  4. Click on OK.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2812) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Random Numbers in a Range.

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