Rand() isn’t Random

If you use Microsoft SQL 2000, you’ve probably at one point had to pull random results. The built in rand() function simply doesn’t work. It gives you a random value the first time, and every time after it is the same it seems.

I found a new way to do this today after 20 pages of searching, so hopefully this will help someone else.

ORDER BY newid()

yup, it’s that simple.


SELECT
  TOP 2
    field1
   ,field2
FROM
  TABLE
WHERE
  field1 = 1
ORDER BY
  newid()

To be noted, this will put a full table scan in place before it selects the top 2, so keep performance in mind.

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