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Random Class

Represents a pseudo-random number generator, a device that produces a sequence of numbers that meet certain statistical requirements for randomness.

To browse the .NET Framework source code for this type, see the Reference Source.

Namespace:  System
Assembly:  mscorlib (in mscorlib.dll)
[<SerializableAttribute>]
[<ComVisibleAttribute(true)>]
type Random =  class end

The Random type exposes the following members.

  NameDescription
Public methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsRandom()Initializes a new instance of the Random class, using a time-dependent default seed value.
Public methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsRandom(Int32)Initializes a new instance of the Random class, using the specified seed value.
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  NameDescription
Public methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsEquals(Object)Determines whether the specified object is equal to the current object. (Inherited from Object.)
Protected methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsFinalizeAllows an object to try to free resources and perform other cleanup operations before it is reclaimed by garbage collection. (Inherited from Object.)
Public methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsGetHashCodeServes as the default hash function. (Inherited from Object.)
Public methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsGetTypeGets the Type of the current instance. (Inherited from Object.)
Protected methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsMemberwiseCloneCreates a shallow copy of the current Object. (Inherited from Object.)
Public methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsNext()Returns a nonnegative random integer.
Public methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsNext(Int32)Returns a nonnegative random integer that is less than the specified maximum.
Public methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsNext(Int32, Int32)Returns a random integer that is within a specified range.
Public methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsNextBytesFills the elements of a specified array of bytes with random numbers.
Public methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsNextDoubleReturns a random floating-point number between 0.0 and 1.0.
Protected methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsSampleReturns a random floating-point number between 0.0 and 1.0.
Public methodSupported by the XNA FrameworkSupported by Portable Class LibrarySupported in .NET for Windows Store appsToStringReturns a string that represents the current object. (Inherited from Object.)
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NoteNote

To view the .NET Framework source code for this type, see the Reference Source. You can browse through the source code online, download the reference for offline viewing, and step through the sources (including patches and updates) during debugging; see instructions.

Pseudo-random numbers are chosen with equal probability from a finite set of numbers. The chosen numbers are not completely random because a definite mathematical algorithm is used to select them, but they are sufficiently random for practical purposes. The current implementation of the Random class is based on Donald E. Knuth's subtractive random number generator algorithm. For more information, see D. E. Knuth. "The Art of Computer Programming, volume 2: Seminumerical Algorithms". Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA, second edition, 1981.

The random number generation starts from a seed value. If the same seed is used repeatedly, the same series of numbers is generated. One way to produce different sequences is to make the seed value time-dependent, thereby producing a different series with each new instance of Random. By default, the parameterless constructor of the Random class uses the system clock to generate its seed value, while its parameterized constructor can take an Int32 value based on the number of ticks in the current time. However, because the clock has finite resolution, using the parameterless constructor to create different Random objects in close succession creates random number generators that produce identical sequences of random numbers. The following example illustrates that two Random objects that are instantiated in close succession generate an identical series of random numbers.

No code example is currently available or this language may not be supported.

This problem can be avoided by creating a single Random object rather than multiple ones.

To improve performance, create one Random object to generate many random numbers over time, instead of repeatedly creating a new Random objects to generate one random number.

To generate a cryptographically secure random number suitable for creating a random password, for example, use a class derived from System.Security.Cryptography.RandomNumberGenerator such as System.Security.Cryptography.RNGCryptoServiceProvider.

Notes to Callers

The implementation of the random number generator in the Random class is not guaranteed to remain the same across major versions of the .NET Framework. As a result, your application code should not assume that the same seed will result in the same pseudo-random sequence in different versions of the .NET Framework.

Notes to Inheritors

In the .NET Framework versions 1.0 and 1.1, a minimum implementation of a class derived from Random required overriding the Sample method to define a new or modified algorithm for generating random numbers. The derived class could then rely on the base class implementation of the Random.Next(), Random.Next(Int32), Random.Next(Int32, Int32), NextBytes, and NextDouble methods to call the derived class implementation of the Sample method.

In the .NET Framework version 2.0 and later, the behavior of the Random.Next(), Random.Next(Int32, Int32), and NextBytes methods have changed so that these methods do not necessarily call the derived class implementation of the Sample method. As a result, classes derived from Random that target the .NET Framework 2.0 and later should also override these three methods.

The following example creates a single random number generator and calls its NextBytes, Next, and NextDouble methods to generate sequences of random numbers within different ranges.

No code example is currently available or this language may not be supported.

The following example generates a random integer that it uses as an index to retrieve a string value from an array.

No code example is currently available or this language may not be supported.

.NET Framework

Supported in: 4.5.1, 4.5, 4, 3.5, 3.0, 2.0, 1.1, 1.0

.NET Framework Client Profile

Supported in: 4, 3.5 SP1

Portable Class Library

Supported in: Portable Class Library

.NET for Windows Store apps

Supported in: Windows 8

.NET for Windows Phone apps

Supported in: Windows Phone 8.1, Windows Phone 8, Silverlight 8.1

Windows Phone 8.1, Windows Phone 8, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, Windows 7, Windows Vista SP2, Windows Server 2008 (Server Core Role not supported), Windows Server 2008 R2 (Server Core Role supported with SP1 or later; Itanium not supported)

The .NET Framework does not support all versions of every platform. For a list of the supported versions, see .NET Framework System Requirements.

Any public static (Shared in Visual Basic) members of this type are thread safe. Any instance members are not guaranteed to be thread safe.
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