# How to use the SORTBY function

The SORTBY function allows you to sort values from a cell range or array based on a corresponding cell range or array. It sorts values by column but keeps rows.

It is located in the Lookup and reference category and is only available to Excel 365 subscribers.

### What's on this page

- SORTBY Function Syntax
- SORTBY Function Arguments
- SORTBY Function example
- What is a spilled array formula?
- Why does the SORTBY function return a #SPILL! error?
- The SORTBY function returns a #NAME! error?
- Does the SORTBY function differentiate between upper and lower letters?
- How to sort from A to Z?
- How to sort from Z to A?
- How to sort from smallest to largest?
- How to sort from largest to smallest?
- How to sort by multiple columns?
- Sort by another column
- How to sort by the first letter/digit?
- How to sort by absolute value?
- How to sort by the last word in a cell?
- How to sort by the first name?
- How to sort by the last name?
- How to sort by custom list?
- How to sort by month?
- Sort by word length
- Sort in random order
- Sort unique values in random order
- Sort by week number
- Sort by quarter
- Sort based on row count
- Sort numbers based on proximity to a given number
- Get Excel file

## 1. SORTBY Function Syntax

SORTBY(*array, by_array1, [sort_order1], [by_array2, sort_order2]*,…)

## 2. SORTBY Function Arguments

Argument |
Text |

array |
Required. Cell range or array. |

by_array1 |
Required. A cell range or array. |

[sort_order1] |
Optional. Sort order for argument by_array1. 1 - Ascending order (A to Z or small to large) -1 - descending order (Z to A or large to small). 1 is the default value if the argument is not specified. |

[by_array2] |
Optional. The cell range or array. |

[sort_order2] |
Optional. Sort order for argument [by_array2]. 1 - Ascending order (A to Z or small to large) -1 - descending order (Z to A or large to small). 1 is the default value if the argument is not specified. |

## 3. SORTBY Function Example

Formula in cell D3:

The formula demonstrated in the image above sorts the data in cell range B3:D8 by column B and then column C and lastly column D in ascending order, and returns the sorted array to cell F3. This is not possible using the SORT function, the SORTBY function is more advanced.

## 4. What is a spilled array formula?

Excel 365 automatically expands the output range based on the number of values in the array, this without requiring the user to enter the formula as an array formula.

This new behavior of Excel is called spilled array formula and is something only dynamic array formulas can do. Dynamic array formulas are only available to Excel 365 subscribers.

## 5. Why does the SORTBY function return a #SPILL! error?

If the needed cell range is populated by any other value a #SPILL! error is returned by the SORTBY function. You have two options:

- Remove value leaving the cell blank.
- Enter the dynamic formula in another cell that has empty adjacent cells.

## 6. Why does the SORTBY function return a #NAME! error?

If a cell returns #NAME! error you have either spelled the function name wrong or you use an incompatible Excel version.

The image above shows that I spelled the SORTBY function wrong in the formula bar, cell F3 displays #NAME! error.

Only Excel 365 subscription version supports the new dynamic array formula like the SORTBY function, older Excel versions like Excel 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007 and earlier versions do not support the SORTBY function.

Here is how to find out your Excel version: Get your Excel version

## 7. Does the SORTBY function differentiate between upper and lower letters?

No, the SORTBY function is not case sensitive. The image above shows that item "APPLE" in upper letters is not sorted differently than item "apple" in lower letters.

## 8. How to sort from A to Z?

SORTBY(array, by_array1, [sort_order1], [by_array2, sort_order2],…)

The third argument and then every other argument lets you choose the sort order. If omitted 1 is used.

1 -> Ascending order (A to Z or small to large)

-1 -> descending order (Z to A or large to small)

The formula above sorts values from cell range B3:C8 by cell range B3:B8 from A to Z, then by C3:C8 from A to Z.

## 9. How to sort from Z to A?

SORTBY(*array, by_array1, [sort_order1], [by_array2, sort_order2]*,…)

The third argument and then every other argument lets you choose the sort order. If omitted 1 is used.

1 -> Ascending order (A to Z or small to large)

-1 -> descending order (Z to A or large to small)

The formula above sorts values from cell range B3:C8 by cell range B3:B8 from Z to A, then by C3:C8 from Z to A.

## 10. How to sort from smallest to largest?

SORTBY(*array, by_array1, [sort_order1], [by_array2, sort_order2]*,…)

The third argument and then every other argument lets you choose the sort order. If omitted 1 is used.

1 -> Ascending order (A to Z or small to large)

-1 -> descending order (Z to A or large to small)

The formula above sorts values from cell range B3:C8 by cell range B3:B8 from small to large, then by C3:C8 from small to large.

## 11. How to sort from largest to smallest?

SORTBY(array, by_array1, [sort_order1], [by_array2, sort_order2],…)

1 -> Ascending order (A to Z or small to large)

-1 -> descending order (Z to A or large to small)

The formula above sorts values from cell range B3:C8 by cell range B3:B8 from large to small, then by C3:C8 from large to small.

## 12. How to sort by multiple columns?

The image above demonstrates a dynamic array formula in cell F3 that sorts values from cell range B3:D8 by column B in descending order, then by column C in ascending order, and lastly by column D in ascending order.

SORTBY(array, by_array1, [sort_order1], [by_array2, sort_order2],…)

## 13. How to sort by another column?

The dynamic array formula in cell E3 sorts values from cell range B3:B8 by cell range C3:C8 in ascending order.

The SORTBY function allows you to sort values from a column by another column keeping rows intact. The image above demonstrates this, the fruits in column B are sorted by values in column C in ascending order (alphabetically).

SORTBY(array, by_array1, [sort_order1], [by_array2, sort_order2],…)

## 14. How to sort by the first letter/digit? (Example 1)

Formula in cell D3:

### Step 1 - Extract first character of each item

The LEFT function extracts a specific number of characters always starting from the left.

LEFT(*text*, [*num_chars*])

LEFT(B3:B10,1)

becomes

LEFT({"Banana"; "Avocado"; "Apple"; "Breadfruit"; "Blackcurrant"; "Blackberries"; "Blueberries"; "Apricots"}, 1)

and returns

{"B"; "A"; "A"; "B"; "B"; "B"; "B"; "A"}

### Step 2 - Sort contents of cell range B3:B10 based on array

SORTBY(B3:B10,LEFT(B3:B10,1),1)

becomes

SORTBY(B3:B10,{"B"; "A"; "A"; "B"; "B"; "B"; "B"; "A"},1)

becomes

SORTBY({"Banana"; "Avocado"; "Apple"; "Breadfruit"; "Blackcurrant"; "Blackberries"; "Blueberries"; "Apricots"}, {"B"; "A"; "A"; "B"; "B"; "B"; "B"; "A"},1)

and returns

{"Avocado"; "Apple"; "Apricots"; "Banana"; "Breadfruit"; "Blackcurrant"; "Blackberries"; "Blueberries"}

in cell D3 and cells below.

## 14.1 How to sort by the first letter? (Example 2)

The values in cell range B3:B10 don't begin with a letter, they begin with a number, we need another formula to extract the first found letter.

Formula in cell C3:

### Step 1 - Count characters

The LEN function counts the characters in a given value.

LEN(B3)

becomes

LEN("110 Banana")

and returns 10. "110 Banana" contains 10 characters excluding the double-quotes.

### Step 2 - Create a sequence from 1 to the number of characters in cell

The SEQUENCE function returns an array of numbers based on given limits.

SEQUENCE(rows,[columns],[start],[step])

SEQUENCE(LEN(B3))

becomes

SEQUENCE(10)

and returns {1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9; 10}. There are ten numbers in the array from 1 to 10.

### Step 3 - Extract each character in the cell

The MID function returns a part of a value based on the start character and number of characters.

MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1)

becomes

MID(B3, {1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9; 10}, 1)

becomes

MID("110 Banana", {1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9; 10}, 1)

and returns the following array.

{"1"; "1"; "0"; " "; "B"; "a"; "n"; "a"; "n"; "a"}

### Step 4 - Multiply each value in the array with 1

The purpose of this step is to check if the character is a letter or a number. Multiplying a number works fine, however, multiplying a letter with a number results in an error.

MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1)*1

becomes

{"1"; "1"; "0"; " "; "B"; "a"; "n"; "a"; "n"; "a"}*1

and returns

{1; 1; 0; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!}

### Step 5 - Check each value in array is an error

The ISERROR function returns true if the value is an error value and False if anything else.

ISERROR(MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1)*1))

becomes

ISERROR({1; 1; 0; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!})

and returns

{FALSE; FALSE; FALSE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE}

### Step 6 - Replace each error with corresponding character and replace numbers with nothing

The IF function replaces error values with the value itself and other values with nothing.

IF(ISERROR(MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1)*1)), MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1), "")

becomes

IF({FALSE; FALSE; FALSE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE}, MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1), "")

becomes

IF({FALSE; FALSE; FALSE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE; TRUE}, {"1"; "1"; "0"; " "; "B"; "a"; "n"; "a"; "n"; "a"}, "")

and returns

{""; ""; ""; " "; "B"; "a"; "n"; "a"; "n"; "a"}.

### Step 7 - Join all remaining values in array

The TEXTJOIN function concatenates all values in an array.

TEXTJOIN("", TRUE, IF(ISERROR((MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1)*1)), MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1), ""))

becomes

TEXTJOIN("", TRUE, {""; ""; ""; " "; "B"; "a"; "n"; "a"; "n"; "a"})

and returns "Banana".

### Step 8 - Remove leading and trailing blanks

The TRIM function removes leading and trailing blanks.

TRIM(TEXTJOIN("", TRUE, IF(ISERROR((MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1)*1)), MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1), "")))

becomes

TRIM("Banana")

and returns "Banana".

### Step 9 - Shorten formula

The LET function lets you shorten big formulas.

TRIM(TEXTJOIN("", TRUE, IF(ISERROR((MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1)*1)), MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1), "")))

becomes

LET(x, MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)), 1), TRIM(TEXTJOIN("", TRUE, IF(ISERROR((x*1)), x, ""))))

Formula in cell E3:

## 14.2 How to sort by the first digit? (Example 3)

Formula in cell C3:

### Step 1 - Count characters in cell

The LEN function counts the characters in a given value.

LEN(B3)

becomes

LEN("Banana 52")

and returns 9. There are nine characters in "Banana 52" excluding the double-quotes.

### Step 2 - Create an array with numbers

The SEQUENCE function returns an array of numbers based on given limits.

SEQUENCE(*rows*,[*columns*],[*start*],[*step*])

SEQUENCE(LEN(B3))

becomes

SEQUENCE(9)

and returns {1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9}

### Step 3 - Extract each character

The MID function returns a substring from a string based on the starting position and the number of characters you want to extract.

Here is the syntax: MID(*text*, *start_num*, *num_chars*)

MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)),1)

becomes

MID(B3, {1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9},1)

becomes

MID("Banana 52", {1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9},1)

and returns {"B";"a";"n";"a";"n";"a";" ";"5";"2"}.

### Step 4 - Identify numbers

This step multiplies all values in the array with 1, a letter returns an error value and a number returns a number.

MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)),1)*1

becomes

{"B";"a";"n";"a";"n";"a";" ";"5";"2"}*1

and returns {#VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; 5; 2}.

### Step 5 - Create boolean values True or False

The IFERROR function returns a specified value if a value is an error and nothing for everything else.

IFERROR(MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)),1)*1,"")

becomes

IFERROR({#VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; #VALUE!; 5; 2},"")

and returns {"";"";"";"";"";"";"";5;2}.

### Step 6 - Join values in array

The TEXTJOIN function combines text strings, here is the syntax: TEXTJOIN(*delimiter*, *ignore_empty*, *text1*, *[text2]*, ...)

TEXTJOIN("",TRUE,IFERROR(MID(B3, SEQUENCE(LEN(B3)),1)*1,""))

becomes

TEXTJOIN("",TRUE,{"";"";"";"";"";"";"";5;2})

and returns "52" in cell C3.

## 15. How to sort by absolute number?

Formula in cell E3:

### Step 1 - Remove negative signs

The ABS function converts negative numbers to positive numbers.

ABS(C3:C8)

becomes

ABS({-5;-2;3;2;5;-5})

and returns {5; 2; 3; 2; 5; 5}.

### Step 2 - Sort by numbers from small to large

SORTBY(B3:C8, ABS(C3:C8), 1)

becomes

SORTBY(B3:C8, {5; 2; 3; 2; 5; 5}, 1)

becomes

SORTBY({"Lemon",-5; "Apple",-2; "Banana",3; "Pear",2; "Orange",5; "Lime",-5}, {5; 2; 3; 2; 5; 5}, 1)

and returns

{"Apple",-2; "Pear",2; "Banana",3; "Lemon",-5; "Orange",5; "Lime",-5} in cell E3.

## 16. How to sort by the last word in a cell?

The image above demonstrates a dynamic array formula in cell D3 that sorts values from cell range B3:B8 by the last word in each cell.

Formula in cell D3:

### Step 1 - Repeat blank

The REPT function repeats a text string based on a given number.

REPT(" ", 200)

returns a text string with 200 space characters.

### Step 2 - Substitute blank with repeated blanks

The SUBSTITUTE function replaces all instances of a specific text string in a value.

SUBSTITUTE(B3:B8, " ", REPT(" ", 200))

becomes

SUBSTITUTE({"Lemon pie"; "Apple sauce"; "Banana split"; "Pear cream dessert"; "Orange jello"; "Lime cream"}," ",REPT(" ",200))

and returns

{"Lemon pie";"Apple sauce";"Banana split";"Pear cream dessert";"Orange jello";"Lime cream"}.

WordPress removes duplicate space characters, I hope you get the idea anyway.

### Step 3 - Extracts 100 characters starting from the right

The RIGHT function extracts a specific number of characters always starting from the right.

RIGHT(SUBSTITUTE(B3:B8, " ", REPT(" ", 200)), 200)

returns

{" pie";" sauce";" split";" dessert";" jello";" cream"}

All blanks are not shown, WordPress removes duplicate space characters.

### Step 4 - Remove remaining blanks

TRIM(RIGHT(SUBSTITUTE(B3:B8, " ", REPT(" ", 200)), 200))

returns

{"pie";"sauce";"split";"dessert";"jello";"cream"}

### Step 5 - Sort B3:B8 by last word

SORTBY(B3:B8, TRIM(RIGHT(SUBSTITUTE(B3:B8, " ", REPT(" ", 200)), 200)))

becomes

SORTBY(B3:B8, {"pie";"sauce";"split";"dessert";"jello";"cream"})

becomes

SORTBY({"Lemon pie"; "Apple sauce"; "Banana split"; "Pear cream dessert"; "Orange jello"; "Lime cream"}, {"pie";"sauce";"split";"dessert";"jello";"cream"})

and returns

{"Lime cream"; "Pear cream dessert"; "Orange jello"; "Lemon pie"; "Apple sauce"; "Banana split"}

## 17. How to sort by first name?

The image above demonstrates a dynamic array formula in cell E3 that sorts values from cell range B3:B8 by the first name.

Formula in cell E3:

## 18. How to sort by last name?

The easiest way to sort last names and first names in the image above is to use the SORT function.

Formula in cell D3:

It sorts the array by the first column from A to Z if you omit all optional arguments.

SORT(*array*, [*sort_index*], [*sort_order*], [*by_col*])

## 19. How to sort by a custom list?

The formula in cell E3 rearranges the rows in cell range B3:C14 based on a custom list specified in cell range B17:B28.

Formula in cell E3:

### Step 1 - Find position of item in a custom list

The MATCH function returns the relative position of an item in an array or cell reference that matches a specified value in a specific order.

MATCH(*lookup_value*, *lookup_array*, [*match_type*])

MATCH(B3:B14, B17:B28, 0)

becomes

MATCH({"KT"; "MK"; "SZ"; "SQ"; "KP"; "XV"; "BA"; "OJ"; "JY"; "WD"; "TG"; "FV"},{"WD"; "SQ"; "TG"; "JY"; "OJ"; "KP"; "FV"; "KT"; "XV"; "SZ"; "BA"; "MK"},0)

and returns {8; 12; 10; 2; 6; 9; 11; 5; 4; 1; 3; 7}. These numbers represent the position in the custom list and they tell you how to sort the values.

### Step 2 - Sort cell range B3:C14 based on numbers

SORTBY(B3:C14,MATCH(B3:B14,B17:B28,0))

becomes

SORTBY(B3:C14, {8; 12; 10; 2; 6; 9; 11; 5; 4; 1; 3; 7})

becomes

SORTBY({"KT","Banana"; "MK","Water melon"; "SZ","Blueberries"; "SQ","Lime"; "KP","grapefruits"; "XV","Apricots"; "BA","Lemon"; "OJ","Avocado"; "JY","Apple"; "WD","Blackberries"; "TG","Oranges"; "FV","Citrus"}, {8; 12; 10; 2; 6; 9; 11; 5; 4; 1; 3; 7})

and returns

{"WD","Blackberries"; "SQ","Lime"; "TG","Oranges"; "JY","Apple"; "OJ","Avocado"; "KP","grapefruits"; "FV","Citrus"; "KT","Banana"; "XV","Apricots"; "SZ","Blueberries"; "BA","Lemon"; "MK","Water melon"}

in cell E3 and cells below.

## 20. How to sort by month?

Formula in cell E3:

### Step 1 - Convert values to numbers

The MATCH function allows you to calculate a position in a given array or cell range based on a lookup value. It returns a number that represents the position in the array.

MATCH(B3:B8, {"January"; "February"; "March"; "April"; "May"; "June"; "July"; "August"; "September"; "October"; "November"; "December"}, 0)

becomes

MATCH({"March"; "June"; "February"; "January"; "April"; "May"}, {"January"; "February"; "March"; "April"; "May"; "June"; "July"; "August"; "September"; "October"; "November"; "December"}, 0)

and returns

{3; 6; 2; 1; 4; 5}

The first number in the array is 3, it corresponds to March in cell range B3:B8. March is the third month. The second month in cell range B3:B8 is June, the corresponding number is 6. June is the sixth month.

### Step 2 - Sort array based on numbers

SORTBY(B3:C8, MATCH(B3:B8, {"January"; "February"; "March"; "April"; "May"; "June"; "July"; "August"; "September"; "October"; "November"; "December"}, 0))

becomes

SORTBY(B3:C8, {3; 6; 2; 1; 4; 5})

becomes

SORTBY({"March", "Banana"; "June", "Avocado"; "February", "Apple"; "January", "Apricots"; "April", "Blueberries"; "May", "Blackberries"}, {3; 6; 2; 1; 4; 5})

and returns

{"January", "Apricots"; "February", "Apple"; "March", "Banana"; "April", "Blueberries"; "May", "Blackberries"; "June", "Avocado"}

## 21. Sort by word length

The image above demonstrates a dynamic array formula in cell D3 that sorts the cell values in cell range B3:B14 by word length.

Formula in cell D3:

### Step 1 - Calculate word length

The LEN function counts the number of characters in a cell or text string.

LEN(B3:B14)

becomes

LEN({"Banana"; "Water melon"; "Blueberries"; "Lime"; "grapefruits"; "Apricots"; "Lemon"; "Avocado"; "Apple"; "Blackberries"; "Oranges"; "Citrus"})

and returns

{6; 11; 11; 4; 11; 8; 5; 7; 5; 12; 7; 6}

### Step 2 - Sort cell range B3:B14 by word length number

SORTBY(B3:B14, LEN(B3:B14))

becomes

SORTBY(B3:B14, {6; 11; 11; 4; 11; 8; 5; 7; 5; 12; 7; 6})

becomes

SORTBY({"Banana"; "Water melon"; "Blueberries"; "Lime"; "grapefruits"; "Apricots"; "Lemon"; "Avocado"; "Apple"; "Blackberries"; "Oranges"; "Citrus"}, {6; 11; 11; 4; 11; 8; 5; 7; 5; 12; 7; 6})

and returns

{"Lime"; "Lemon"; "Apple"; "Banana"; "Citrus"; "Avocado"; "Oranges"; "Apricots"; "Water melon"; "Blueberries"; "grapefruits"; "Blackberries"}

in cell range D3:D14.

## 22. Sort in random order

Formula in cell D3:

### Step 1 - Count the number of rows in cell range B3:B7

The ROWS function returns the number of rows from a cell range or array.

ROWS(B3:B7)

becomes

ROWS({"Banana";"Lemon";"Apple";"Pear";"Orange"})

and returns 5. There are five rows in cell range B3:B7.

### Step 2 - Create random values between 0 (zero) and 1

The RANDARRAY function returns an array of randomized numbers, you can specify the size of the array, and if decimals or whole numbers are to be returned, also the min and max numbers.

RANDARRAY([*rows*],[*columns*],[*min*],[*max*],[*whole_number*])

We are going to specify only the row argument which makes the RANDARRAY function return random numbers based on the ROWS function.

RANDARRAY(ROWS(B3:B7))

becomes

RANDARRAY(5)

and returns 5 random decimal numbers.

{0.853939211740133; 0.581193997533527; 0.1410253631491; 0.747189425872485; 0.394921711301841}

### Step 3 - Sort values in B3:B7 based on random values

SORTBY(B3:B7,RANDARRAY(ROWS(B3:B7)))

becomes

SORTBY(B3:B7, {0.853939211740133; 0.581193997533527; 0.1410253631491; 0.747189425872485; 0.394921711301841})

becomes

SORTBY({"Banana"; "Lemon"; "Apple"; "Pear"; "Orange"}, {0.853939211740133; 0.581193997533527; 0.1410253631491; 0.747189425872485; 0.394921711301841})

and returns values from cell range B3:B7 randomly.

{"Lemon";"Banana";"Orange";"Apple";"Pear"}

My formula is inspired by a formula made by David Hager found here: Excel #8 – Making a Bingo Card Using Only Formulas with Dynamic Array Functions

## 23. Sort in unique numbers in random order

**Question:** How do I create a random list of unique numbers from say 1 to 10, without using VBA and without enabling iterative calculation in excel options and not using "helper" columns?

**Answer:**

The numbers in cell range A2:A11 are random and between 1 and 10.

Press function key F9 to generate a new random sequence.

Array formula in A2:

Excel 365 formula in cell A2:

**How to enter an array formula**

- Select cell A2
- Copy / Paste above array formula to formula bar

- Press and hold CTRL + SHIFT
- Press Enter
- Release all keys

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Array formulas allows you to do advanced calculations not possible with regular formulas.

Copy cell A2 and paste down as far as needed.

### Explaining array formula in cell A2

**Step 1 - Create an array**

ROW($1:$10) creates this array {1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10}

**Step 2 - Create a criterion to avoid duplicate numbers**

COUNTIF(*$A$1:**A1*, ROW($1:$10)) makes sure no duplicate numbers are created. The formula has both absolute and relative cell references (*$A$1:**A1*). When the formula are copied down to cell A3 the cell reference changes to $A$1:A2. The value in cell A2 can´t be randomly selected again.

In cell A2, COUNTIF(*$A$1:**A1*, ROW($1:$10)) creates this array: {0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0)

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Counts the number of cells that meet a specific condition.

**Step 3 - Create a new dynamic array**

ROW($1:$10)*NOT(COUNTIF($A$1:A1, ROW($1:$10))) creates this array in cell A2: {1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10}

If the array formula randomly selects the number 2 in cell A2, the formula in cell A3 creates this array: {1, **0**, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10}

Number 2 can´t be selected anymore.

**Step 4 - Calculate the number range in Randbetween(bottom, top)**

The bottom value is always 1. The top value changes depending on current cell.

In cell A2 the top value is 10.

In cell A3 the top value is 9

and so on..

Formula in cell A2: 11-ROW(A1) equals 10. (11-1=10)

Formula in cell A3: 11-ROW(A2) equals 9. (11-2=9)

and so on..

*Step 5 - Create a random number*

=LARGE(ROW($1:$10)*NOT(COUNTIF($A$1:A1, ROW($1:$10))), **RANDBETWEEN(1,11-ROW(A1))**)

RANDBETWEEN(1,11-ROW(A1))

becomes

RANDBETWEEN(1,11-1)

becomes

RANDBETWEEN(1,10)

and returns a random number between 1 and 10.

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Microsoft Excel has three useful functions for generating random numbers, the RAND, RANDBETWEEN, and the RANDARRAY functions. The RAND function […]

**Step 6 - Select a random number in array**

=LARGE(ROW($1:$10)*NOT(COUNTIF($A$1:A1, ROW($1:$10))), RANDBETWEEN(1,11-ROW(A1)))

becomes

=LARGE({1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10}, RANDBETWEEN(1,10))

becomes

=LARGE({1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10},* random_number*) and returns a random number between 1 and 10.

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The SMALL function lets you extract a number in a cell range based on how small it is compared to the other numbers in the group.

**How to customize array formula to your excel work sheet**

If your list starts at F3 change $A$1:A1 to $F$2:F2 in the above array formula. To change the numbers from 1 to 10 to, for example, 2 to 12, change $1:$10 to $2:$12 also in the above array formula.

Press F9 to generate a new random list of unique numbers.

## 24. How to sort by week number

The image above shows a dynamic array formula that sorts values from cell range B3:C19 by the corresponding week number.

Formula in cell E3:

### Step 1 - Calculate week number

The ISOWEEKNUM function calculates a number of the ISO week number of the year for a given date.

ISOWEEKNUM(B3:B19)

returns

{22; 22; 22; 43; 18; 28; 23; 13; 34; 12; 41; 46; 49; 20; 14; 49; 42}

### Step 2 - Sort by week number

SORTBY(B3:C19, ISOWEEKNUM(B3:B19))

becomes

SORTBY(B3:C19, {22; 22; 22; 43; 18; 28; 23; 13; 34; 12; 41; 46; 49; 20; 14; 49; 42})

and returns

{43909,"Milena"; 43918,"Rogan"; 43924,"Paolo"; 43949,"Dolores"; 43968,"Kingsley"; 43976,"Rohan"; 43979,"Finlay"; 43976,"Sneha"; 43985,"Tyson"; 44018,"Leandro"; 44066,"Hasnain"; 44114,"Mai"; 44116,"Jane"; 44124,"Winifred"; 44149,"Collette"; 44169,"Manraj"; 44166,"Virginia"}.

## 25. How to sort by quarter

The image above shows a dynamic array formula that calculates quarters based on dates in column B, it then sorts values from cell range B3:V19 by the quarters from small to large.

Formula in cell E3:

### Step 1 - Calculate month number

The MONTH function returns a number from 1 to 12 from an Excel date representing the position. 1 - January, ... , 12 - December.

MONTH(B3:B19)

becomes

MONTH({43976; 43979; 43976; 44124; 43949; 44018; 43985; 43918; 44066; 43909; 44114; 44149; 44169; 43968; 43924; 44166; 44116})

and returns

{5; 5; 5; 10; 4; 7; 6; 3; 8; 3; 10; 11; 12; 5; 4; 12; 10}

### Step 2 - Calculate quarter

The MATCH function returns a number representing the quarter, in this specific example.

MATCH(MONTH(B3:B19), {0;4;7;10}, 1)

becomes

MATCH({5; 5; 5; 10; 4; 7; 6; 3; 8; 3; 10; 11; 12; 5; 4; 12; 10}, {0;4;7;10}, 1)

and returns

{2; 2; 2; 4; 2; 3; 2; 1; 3; 1; 4; 4; 4; 2; 2; 4; 4}.

January -> 1 -> Quarter 1

February -> 2 -> Quarter 1

March -> 3 -> Quarter 1

April -> 4 -> Quarter 2

May -> 5 -> Quarter 2

June -> 6 -> Quarter 2

July -> 7 -> Quarter 3

August -> 8 -> Quarter 3

September -> 9 -> Quarter 3

October -> 10 -> Quarter 4

November -> 11 -> Quarter 4

December -> 12 -> Quarter 4

### Step 3 - Sort by quarter

SORTBY(B3:C19, MATCH(MONTH(B3:B19), {0;4;7;10}, 1))

becomes

SORTBY(B3:C19, {2; 2; 2; 4; 2; 3; 2; 1; 3; 1; 4; 4; 4; 2; 2; 4; 4})

and returns

{43918,"Rogan"; 43909,"Milena"; 43976,"Rohan"; 43979,"Finlay"; 43976,"Sneha"; 43949,"Dolores"; 43985,"Tyson"; 43968,"Kingsley"; 43924,"Paolo"; 44018,"Leandro"; 44066,"Hasnain"; 44124,"Winifred"; 44114,"Mai"; 44149,"Collette"; 44169,"Manraj"; 44166,"Virginia"; 44116,"Jane"}

in cell F3.

## 26. How to sort based on row count

The image above demonstrates a formula in cell E3 that extracts unique distinct rows from cell range B3:C11 sorted by row count.

For example, row 3 contains "Banana" and "20". Row 7 contains "Banana" and "20" as well, which makes the total row count 2 for that particular row.

The dynamic array formula in cell G3 returns 2 in cell G4 which corresponds to "Banana" and "20" in cell range E4:F4.

Formula in cell E3:

### Step 1 - Count duplicate rows

The COUNTIFS function calculates the number of cells across multiple ranges that equals all given conditions.

COUNTIFS(criteria_range1, criteria1, [criteria_range2, criteria2]…)

We have two columns and must use two pairs of arguments to be able to count rows. The result is an array containing numbers for each corresponding row.

COUNTIFS(B3:B11, B3:B11, C3:C11, C3:C11)

becomes

COUNTIFS({"Banana"; "Lemon"; "Banana"; "Pear"; "Banana"; "Lemon"; "Banana"; "Lemon"; "Pear"}, {"Banana"; "Lemon"; "Banana"; "Pear"; "Banana"; "Lemon"; "Banana"; "Lemon"; "Pear"}, {20; 30; 10; 5; 20; 30; 10; 30; 10}, {20; 30; 10; 5; 20; 30; 10; 30; 10})

and returns {2; 3; 2; 1; 2; 3; 2; 3; 1}.

The first number in the array corresponds to the first row and so on. 2 means that there is a duplicate row in cell range B3:C11, the blue arrows show where that duplicate row is located.

### Step 2 - Sort array based on row count

SORTBY(*array, by_array1, [sort_order1], [by_array2, sort_order2]*,…)

The SORTBY function sorts values from cell range B3:C11 by the result array from the COUNTIFS function from large to small.

SORTBY(B3:C11, COUNTIFS(B3:B11, B3:B11, C3:C11, C3:C11), -1)

becomes

SORTBY(B3:C11, {2; 3; 2; 1; 2; 3; 2; 3; 1}, -1)

becomes

SORTBY({"Banana",20; "Lemon",30; "Banana",10; "Pear",5; "Banana",20; "Lemon",30; "Banana",10; "Lemon",30; "Pear",10}, {2; 3; 2; 1; 2; 3; 2; 3; 1}, -1)

and returns

{"Lemon",30; "Lemon",30; "Lemon",30; "Banana",20; "Banana",10; "Banana",20; "Banana",10; "Pear",5; "Pear",10}

### Step 3 - Extract distinct rows

The UNIQUE function extracts unique distinct rows from the array.

UNIQUE(array,[by_col],[exactly_once])

UNIQUE(SORTBY(B3:C11, COUNTIFS(B3:B11, B3:B11, C3:C11, C3:C11), -1))

becomes

UNIQUE({"Lemon",30; "Lemon",30; "Lemon",30; "Banana",20; "Banana",10; "Banana",20; "Banana",10; "Pear",5; "Pear",10})

and returns

{"Lemon",30,3; "Banana",20,2; "Banana",10,2; "Pear",5,1; "Pear",10,1}

in cell E3.

Formula in cell G3:

I recommend a Pivot Table if you have a very large data set and experience a slow responding worksheet, it is lightning fast.

## 27. Sort numbers based on proximity to a given number

The image above demonstrates an array formula in cell C5 that sorts numbers, specified in cell range B5:B17, based on how far off they are from the given number in cell C2. Example, 9 and 11 are closest to 10 and are extracted first, displayed in cell C5 and C6.

Excel 365 formula:

Previous Excel versions:

### 'SORTBY' function examples

Table of Contents How to use the CHOOSECOLS function How to use the CHOOSEROWS function How to use the DROP […]

This article demonstrates a scoreboard, displayed to the left, that sorts contestants based on total scores and refreshes instantly each […]

This article demonstrates Excel formulas that allows you to list unique distinct values from a single column and sort them […]

### Functions in 'Lookup and reference' category

The SORTBY function function is one of 25 functions in the 'Lookup and reference' category.

### Excel function categories

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### 107 Responses to “How to use the SORTBY function”

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**Contact Oscar**

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How to transpose it into colomn?

Fajar,

Array formula in B2:

Cell A2 is empty. Copy cell B2 to cell range C2:O2.

@ Oscar

Thank you for your quick reply.

Your suggestion is definitely work.

Thank you.

The sample file works in Excel 2003 while pressing F9, but if using F2 and ctrl+shift+enter on B3 for example, the result is #VALUE! even if not changing anything.

Formula evaluation shows in Step 5: RANDBETWEEN(1,{10}) with 10 in {} that evaluates to #VALUE.

As a workaround, I've added the first function that came to mind (SUM) to change the array with 1 item to a single value.

RANDBETWEEN(1,SUM(ROW(A1)))

Hallo, What if my number of rows will vary and I do not want to manually change the formula on different sheets?

Adell,

Array formula in cell B5:

$B$4:B4, ROW(INDEX($A$1:$A$1000, $C$1):INDEX($A$1:$A$1000, $C$2)))), RANDBETWEEN(1, $C$2-$C$1-ROW(A1)+2)), "")You still have to adjust one cell range (bolded).

Thank you. I managed to get it working with using the Index and And function, pointing to my "count' value of maximum number required and it works like a charm!

I have some official user list which i want to use in random page number wise like attached example.

Please help me asap.

https://lh4.ggpht.com/1vrCVTerrixozegO8AyvQzUd7SNCWPeCv1oHKRUbJbIZ3UodpI_U8LdnvUs75yWPD3lanbc=s160

I have tried changing this formula to give me a random list of numbers from 1-189 but it doesn't work. Ideally what I want is a grid 15 by 27 full of numbers from 1-405. I was going to use this formula to give a list and paste them into my grid. Can anyone help?

mATT

Array formula in cell A2:

Copy cell A2 and paste to cell range A3:A190.

See attached file:

unique-random-list-of-numbers-1-189.xls

I know this post is a few years old. I need this exact solution, to randomly generate numbers without duplicates however in this case from 1 to 271. I have copied the above formula and the attached file to expand the range, though any modifications to either always results in #NUM error. Do you know why this is the case?

Following modified formula may help

={INDEX($B$17:$B$33, LARGE(MATCH(ROW($B$17:$B$33), ROW($B$17:$B$33))*NOT(COUNTIF($E$17:E21, $B$17:$B$33)), RANDBETWEEN(1, ROWS($B$17:$B$33)-COUNTA($E$17:E21))))}

Notice counta used at the end. This formula can be used starting from any row whereas the default one had to start at row 2.

Please note that you have to modify cell references since I have directly copied from relevant places in my excel sheet. Inconvenience regretted.

In formula counta function has been used in place of count since the purpose was to use this formula to generate random list of alphanumeric codes from list in a cell range.

I cannot seem to configure this formula to draw from an adjustable range taken from two cells.

Ex: I want a list of unique random numbers between whatever is entered in cell A4(Min) and B4(Max).

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Array formula in cell B3:

See attached file:

unique-random-list-of-numbers-will.xls

Thank you Oscar. This only seems to work if the minimum is very low. Once you reach a minimum number>6 it begins to have problems. I am hoping to begin with numbers in the 1000-3000 range.

I wonder if you are seeing a similar problem?

Will,

you are right!

See attached file:

unique-random-list-of-numbers-will2.xls

This is brilliant Oscar. Thank you.

Thanks for this tip, but for some weird reason I still got a few duplicates. Is there a simple method to generate unique random numbers in a column?

I have a list of 1000 names in column A, and would like to generate unique integer numbers in column B for each of those names.

Thanks

My guess is that the cell reference (bolded below) is not changed.

=LARGE(ROW($1:$10)*NOT(COUNTIF(

$B$2:B2,ROW($1:$10))),RANDBETWEEN(1,11-ROW(A1)))The array formula above is entered in cell range B3 and down as far as needed.

If you enter the formula in cell D4 and downwards, you must change the cell reference to $D$3:D3, like this:

=LARGE(ROW($1:$10)*NOT(COUNTIF(

$D$3:D3,ROW($1:$10))),RANDBETWEEN(1,11-ROW(A1)))Hi Will,

This is a formula I used, the formula was in B3 down to B45 (teh length of my worksheet), the maximum was calcultated in B1, that is the formula revers to B1.

Hope it helps

{=LARGE(ROW(INDIRECT("$1:$"&B$1))*NOT(COUNTIF($B$2:B2,ROW(INDIRECT("$1:$"&B$1)))),RANDBETWEEN(1,B$1+1-ROW(B1))))}

Hi Will,

This formula i just posted, calculted, unique random numbers between 1 and X. Where the maksimum (X)changed on every schedule. My minimum is fixed at 1, but you can change the minimum to refer to a cell that indicated the minimum value/qty.

Good luck

Hi Adell,

I am having trouble changing the minimum value to anything but 1. It has a tendency to result in #NUM! or 0.

EX for 10-20 if B1=20:

{=LARGE(ROW(INDIRECT("$10:$"&B$1))*NOT(COUNTIF($B$2:B2,ROW(INDIRECT("$10:$"&B$1)))),RANDBETWEEN(10,$B$1+1-ROW(B1)))}

Can you tell me what I am doing wrong?

Thanks for all the help!

Hi Will,

The #num is usually, because you did not 'activate' the "string", that is the "{ }" in the beginning and end of the formula. Because there is more than one formula/statement that needs to be "true", before the calculation is done,you need to 'tell' excel to do 'all'. To do this (old fashioned way) you need to go to the beginning of your formula, before the "=" and hold down CTRL + SHFT + ENTER, then the "{}" will appear.

I had a look at the formula and have entered the minimum value into E2.

{=(LARGE(ROW(INDIRECT("$"&E$2&":$"&B$1))*NOT(COUNTIF($B$2:B2,ROW(INDIRECT("$"&E$2&":$"&B$1)))),RANDBETWEEN(E$2,B$1+1-ROW(B1))))}.

see the indirect sections as well as the randbetween part, where it stipulated the minimum and maximum values.

hope this helps, if not, shout :) (I don't know if you can obtain my email address from the webmaster if you need to contact me directly) (I am in RSA and will be going offline within the next hour - weekend! - and will only be back on Monday)

Adell

Will,

I also see that on your formula, you 'left out' the first and last set of brackets, that also might be part of your initial error.

=RANDBETWEEN(TIME(8,0,0),TIME(9,45,0))

i have to maintain random time between this nut is is not working

mayur,

randbetween works only with whole numbers.

Try this: =RAND()*(TIME(9,45,0)-TIME(8,0,0))+TIME(8,0,0)

Hi Frnd,

I want to get a random value between 1-20 but I not able to make any sucess ,I used the formula [=LARGE(ROW($1:$20)*NOT(COUNTIF($A$1:A1,ROW($1:$20))),RANDBETWEEN(1,21-ROW(A1)))]

But it is not working.Please help me...

Manoj,

your formula works, did you enter it as an array formula?

I tried on various systems with above code but i still get same error as below :

#NUM!

Please help me as it is very urgent for me.

Hi,

How to do tht or how do i make an array, because i tried as u guided above , please help me as it is very urgent

Hi ,

in your initial formula, you have "[". it should be "{". enter your formula, without the brackets before the "=" and the end one. Then, go to the beginning of your formula, to the left of the "=" and simultaneously press Ctrl Shft Enter . the "{" brackets will appear and your value will appear. (formula will work)

Hi,

I have done asu said but i get the error as: #VALUE!

and do not get the number ,please help

I used the below formula:

{=LARGE(ROW($1:$20)*NOT(COUNTIF($A$1:A1, ROW($1:$20))),RANDBETWEEN(1,21-ROW(A1)))}

Hi,

I have taken your formula, above and copied and pasted it into a new spreadsheet. took out the "{" and "}" and redid the CTRL SHFT ENTER to create the array/string formula and it works om my schedule. The only thing, that might through you out is the space between the comma and "ROW". go to the following link: https://speedy.sh/aMyaR/a.xlsx

You should be able to open it and see your formula working.

cheesh!.. sorry, it should be "throw you out" .... auto correct...

Hi ,

in your initial formula, you have "[". it should be "{". enter your formula, without the brackets before the "=" and the end one. Then, go to the beginning of your formula, to the left of the "=" and simultaneously press Ctrl Shft Enter . the "{" brackets will appear and your value will appear.

Hi,

I have done asu said but i get the error as: #VALUE!

and do not get the number ,please help

I used the below formula:

{=LARGE(ROW($1:$20)*NOT(COUNTIF($A$1:A1, ROW($1:$20))),RANDBETWEEN(1,21-ROW(A1)))}

Manoj,

Did you manage to get the spreadsheet I uploaded working? Is your formula working now?

Adell,

Thank you for yor support but I'm sorry as when I press with left mouse button on the given link from u ,I get security error n the the link closes n not allowing me to get the file . Is it possible for you sir to mail me the file on the following email id : [email protected]

Regards

Manoj

Hi Adell,

Is it possible to make a randome number set thro entire sheet: i tried the following formula :

[=LARGE(ROW($1:$65535)*NOT(COUNTIF($C$1:C1,ROW$1:$65535))),RANDBETWEEN(1,65536-ROW(C1)))]

but it seems not working:

whenever i try to edit your formulla n ammmend it according to my own chice , it gives error as "#NUM!" and when i pres ctrl+shift+enter , it gives this error "#VALUE!" , can you pls explain wht needs to be done to do it or can you pls make for me and send on : [email protected]

Thanks in advance.

Manoj,

You have a typo in your formula:

=LARGE(ROW($1:$65535)*NOT(COUNTIF($C$1:C1, ROW($1:$65535))), RANDBETWEEN(1, 65536-ROW(C1)))

I tried your formula and it works but it is extremely slow. Do you have to use formulas?

Also remember that the formula creates unique distinct random numbers. If you are looking for only random numbers use this:

=randbetween(0, 65535)

How can I make it start at 0? i.e. random numbers from 0 to 10?

=randbetween(0,10)

Can you try that? I tried that beforehand and it doesn't work for me. :( Why would 1,11 be 1-10 and 0,10 be 0 to 10?

I also want to have them lower down than rows 2-11 but can't make that work either. I tried changing the ROW($1:$10) bits but doesn't seem to work.

me,

try this formula in cell B3:

[...] An array formula taken from here..... How to create a list of random unique numbers in excel | Get Digital Help - Microsoft Excel resource [...]

[...] A couple of links that may help you: Learn Excel 2010 - "Random with No Repeats": Podcast #1471 - YouTube How to create a list of random unique numbers in excel | Get Digital Help - Microsoft Excel resource [...]

I've 30 objects and 10 people, and I need to assign each person with randomly (unique) selected objects as a daily activity. Would you please suggest me on how I can do it using excel formulae?

Vijay,

See this post: Assign each person with randomly unique objects as a daily activity

[...] Vijay asks: [...]

why does the code change the values in Columns "B" and "C" when I enter text values and tab to the next column?

This is what I'm Using, and I only want to affect Column "A" values:

=LARGE(ROW($1:$1000)*NOT(COUNTIF($A$1:A4, ROW($1:$1000))), RANDBETWEEN(1,1000-ROW(A4)))

Correction:

I should have copied the correct code (and lessened the number of tests):

=LARGE(ROW($1:$20)*NOT(COUNTIF($A$1:A1, ROW($1:$20))), RANDBETWEEN(1,20-ROW(A1)))

And, I should've said that when I enter a value in any other column, it automatically assigns a new random number to the fields in column "A". how to do I get it to assign a random number to column "A"'s fields without being readjusted when I enter any other information in the other columns???

Hi Paul,

Random numbers mean excel chooses a random number every time you refresh. (enter, tab, move etc)

Please give me more information as to what info do you want in A, B and C?

Regards

Adell,

I was looking for a way to have excel create a unique random number (not duplicated) in Column "A" that is not influenced by another key stroke. So, for instance, let's say I am creating a patient record and I want to give their account a uniqe number (almost like a primary key in Access or SQL). I don't want that number to be repeated, or to change as I enter more information in the next columns....

You might, once the number has randomly been created make it a definite number and not a formula anymore by: copy, paste special, values.

Or, for a patient number, for instance is to use say the first 3 letters of their surname [use this formula is the surname is in column B =LEFT(B2,3)] with a number, starting at 00001 to infinity. Have excel check that this combination has not been used before?

Let me know if this would work for you.

I think the second option, in using the first 3 letters of the surname with a random number may be the best option in this case. How would you recommend going about doing that???

Paul,

Perhaps like this:

As per Oscar's formula, your numbers will be sequential, which is great, for record keeping and all rules and regulations, that I have ever come in contact with, regarding assigning of record numbers. If you combine your random number formula in stead of the countif formula, you will still have the issue of the numbers changing every time, unless you copy/paste/special after assigning a number. Good luck

Hi Oscar,

Excellent article - with the steps explained.

Only I could not understand why the randbetween is restricted to lesser and lesser values as the range progresses.

RANDBETWEEN(1,20-ROW(A1)))

Request you to explain the logic.

Oscar -

Trying to convert this into a formula for creating a random list from another source. For example, if I have a list of the 50 U.S. states I'd like to create a random/unique list of x number of states. I'm using the position of the state in the INDEX to use as the random number but I'm having trouble in the COUNTIF statement to relate the prior state names I've returned to the "used" portion of the COUNTIF array.

GMF,

Generate unique random text strings

In Excel 2003, when I copy your formula into the formula bar, (cell A2), and use CTRL-SHIFT-ENTER, I get #VALUE! for a result. When I copy the cell directly from your worksheet, (in that case cell B3), and paste it into a blank worksheet, it works fine. Examining that formula it shows #VALUE! for 'RANDBETWEEN(1,11-ROW(A1))', but still works. If I press with left mouse button on the formula bar and then CTRL-SHIFT-ENTER, that formula stops working and returns #VALUE!. I can work around it by replacing ROW(A1) by 1, ROW(A2) by 2, etc.; or 11-ROW(A1) by 10,,etc. – but for sanity's sake, I would like to know what Excel magic you use to make your formula work. Thanks.

Hi Oscar,

I am trying to create a random list of of ten one digit numbers between 0 and 9. It gives me a formula error when I try to do it. Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

Regards,

Gavin

Gavin,

Did you enter the formula as an array formula? (Instructions above)

Hi All,

Would really appreciate it if someone can help me.

I am trying to generate random numbers between -300 & 300.

The formula above seems to work for positive numbers only?

=LARGE(ROW($1:$300)*NOT(COUNTIF($A$1:A1, ROW($1:$300))), RANDBETWEEN(1,300-ROW(A1)))

How can I make this formula generate negative and positive ( -300 to 300)

Thanks

Jack,

Yes, you are right.

Try this:

=LARGE(ROW($1:$600)*NOT(COUNTIF($A$1:A1, ROW($1:$600))), RANDBETWEEN(1,600-ROW(A1)))-300

Thanks Oscar you are the best.

I tried it but some numbers are omitted and others are repeated. Would it be okay to email you directly?

Thank you so much

Jack

Jack,

Sorry, you are right. Try this in cell A2:

=LARGE(ROW($1:$600)*NOT(COUNTIF($A$1:A1, ROW($1:$600)-300)), RANDBETWEEN(1,600-ROW(A1)))-300

If this isn´t working, email me.

I am trying to generate a random sequence of 1-10 without duplicates, but I would like to separate the numbers into two parts such that the first 5 numbers are a random sequence of 1-5 and the last 5 numbers are a random sequence of 6-10. (So the random sequence would look like this for example: 3 2 4 1 5 / 9 8 6 10 7) Is this possible to do with a formula? Do you have any suggestions?

Thank you.

Amy,

I am afraid no, but it is possible with a custom function (vba).

Hey,

For some reason I'm having trouble transposing these formulas for my needs.

I need 2 sets of random numbers in a spreadsheet, if possible 0-9 (not 1-10)

One set starting in cell C2 and going across the columns to L2

The other set starting in B3 and going down to B12

Thanks!

I need two sets of 10 random numbers between 0 and 9 (included) if 0 isn't an option then 1-10 is ok...

cell ranges are C2:L2 and B3:B12

Any help would be much appreciated!

Actually make those cell ranges C3:L3 and B4:B14. Sorry just having trouble with this

Hello, how I can generate 100 random numbers from 11111 up to 55555, but the numbers must be unique and not contain (0,6,7,8,9)

Daniel,

I am not sure you can do that with an array formula. You need a custom function (vba).

Can you help me?

Thank you so much for this simple solution. It's been the final piece in creating a differentiated started for practicing mental calculations in maths. Here's the result: https://lttmaths.com/2014/02/16/differentiated-mental-calculation-strategy-starter/

Nyima,

I am happy you found it useful. I have made something similar before:

https://www.get-digital-help.com/2013/08/23/basic-mathematics-in-excel-for-school-children/

[…] produces calculations suitable for each strategy (and looking on the web for methods to produce unique random numbers in Microsoft Excel - apparently harder than it first sounds!) Also included is a MENTAL TEST SCORE SHEET to record […]

I would like to produce a list of random numbers (non repeating). the number needs to be 5 digits. The number cannot start with zero. So it can have all the digits 0 - 9 in it but cannot start with zero. How do I do this?

leslie,

Try this array formula in cell A2:

=LARGE(ROW($10000:$99999)*NOT(COUNTIF(

$A$1:A1, ROW($10000:$99999))), RANDBETWEEN(1,89999-ROW(A1)))Remember to adjust the bolded cell reference if you enter the array formula in another cell.

Oscar, thank you very much. I ended up entering the formula to generate 5,000 numbers ($1000:$5999) but it took forever. My computer is new with plenty of processing ability so does it make sense that this took a long time. Furthermore, once it was complete I copied the column from that spreadsheet to another one and did a paste special value and it took 2 hours to paste. At then end of it though I have the 5,000 numbers.

Hi, Excellent description on how to use Excell.

However I'm attempting to generate 8 unique random numbers along a row ranging from 1-45. I have tried using your combination of your reply to fajar and the generate values from a cell range however I do not understand how to convert it to go across (along the row) not down (down the column)

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

When copying the formula to cell A2 Excel reports an error in COUNTIF($A$1:A1) pointing to A1 as the source. Any ideas?

Thanks.

Patrick.

Patrick,

Enter the formula in cell A2, not in cell A1. Then copy cell A2 to the cells below.

Genius thanks. I did notice that when modifying to get 30 unique numbers from a range 1-32 the number 1 is rare. Still trying to get my head round this. Also if I type into other columns it regenerates the values.

Hello,

I created the barcodes using a font type, but when I cannot read it with my barcode scanner Motorola MC3090. I've also tried with others barcodes for example, with a notebook and It works for it. What am I doing wrong? I have to write down and additional formula?

Thanks a lot for your help

Need assistance with random number. I'm dealing with service tickets in an excel sheet to generate a report for demo data.

I need to use the =TIMEVALUE("2:00:00") or go off of the original ticket time in the row, for instance. 6/6/2014 1:02:00 AM.

I would need to explain via web session or phone call. I'd be willing to pay $$ if someone wanted to help me.

How do you extrapolate the formula to make a unique table of numbers?

Hi,

I am trying to use the "unique random text strings" to make random pairs of students in my classroom. However: I have opened the attached example file, and while it works perfectly when I open it (I press F9 and get the states randomly sorted again and again), whenever I access the formula I get the #N/A error. I am on Excel 2007, norwegian language pack. All I have to do is press with my mouse in the formula line (like if I wanted to edit the formula) and press enter, and I get error.

What is it that changes when I try to edit the formula?

Thx

edit: I'm an idiot.

Remember to use ctrl+shift+enter instead of just enter when editing array files...

Please let me know if you're looking for a author foor your blog.

You have some really gokod posts and I feel I would be a good

asset. If you ever want to take some of thhe load off,

I'd really like to write some material for your blog iin exchanbge for a link back

to mine.Please blasat me an emil if interested. Kudos!

Hi I am trying to figure out how to use the array formula you supplied in the excel Unique random text strings... My list is a bit longer but I am unable to make changes to the formula. I keep getting error when I would like to make the ROW to 100. Yours stops at 52.

I might need more coffee but I can't seem to figure this out... Can you help?

Thanks in advance. Jennifer

Thank you so much for your help!

Hi, i am wanting to make a table of riders for random gates to start a race. There is 8 riders per race in 8 lanes and am trying to avoid riders getting the same lane.

Thanks in advance

First Name- ratul

Last Name- roy

Date of birth - 19/02/1987

I want a automated calculation in excel which print VP19021987RRAA

RR- first word of first name(Ratul-R) and first word of last name (Roy-R)

19021987- date of birth

AA- I want that value will automatically change when the same value will come that is VP19021987RRAA to VP19021987RRAB

Please help me

[…] How to create a list of random unique numbers in excel … – Table of Contents. Generate unique random numbers; Generate unique random values from a cell range; Generate unique random numbers. Question: How do I create a random … […]

RAND() function in Excel makes Ctrl+y stop working. Why?

[…] How to create a list of random unique numbers in excel […]

Hi,

I have a cell, A1. And I want to use random number generator to get an array basead on the number inside A1.

So let's say A1 is 2. the array i want is 2, 2+1, 2+2, 2+3 spread between A2~A5 randomly.

Is that possible?

I am looking to create a excel with serial numbers as example "121417-ASX-WER-THX"

I am using the Table insertion to autogenerate the serial number when a new row is added but unable to get the above serial number. Please help.

DREAM 11 TEAM GENERATOR IF TOTAL 100 /AND HOW MANY TEAM WILL GET 100 CREDITPOINTS

9 TEAM OR 8 TEAM

AUTOMATIC GENERATOR

Hello,

Excellent and very complete explanation ... !!!

For all non-365 users, is there a possible replicate ?

Could an Array Formula handle the Sort by a column of numbers and generate the same result as the basic Sortby function ?

Thanks in advance for your insight

James,

yes it is possible.

Formula in cell E3:

Array formula in cell F3:

Hello Oscar,

Thanks a lot ...!!!

This is an encouragement for me to have the full SIX Dynamic Array Functions that Microsoft has decided NOT to offer to the Legacy Excel Users ... replicated either in Array Formulas or with UDFs.

Only a few hundreds of Millions Excel loyal users are now left with no updates ... !!!

For sure, they do not deserve any attention ... since they have already paid their license.

Thanks again for your help and for your site which is a great great resource !!!

Take Care

James