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Re: [Help-bash] How random is $RANDOM?

From: Peng Yu
Subject: Re: [Help-bash] How random is $RANDOM?
Date: Thu, 9 May 2019 07:29:51 -0500

Why only 16 bits $RANDOM is supported? Is there a problem to set 32
bits as the default?

On 5/9/19, Andreas Kusalananda Kähäri <address@hidden> wrote:
> On Thu, May 09, 2019 at 06:33:07AM -0500, Peng Yu wrote:
>> Let's say two bash processes call $RANDOM at the exact same time. Will
>> the results be the same? Or the results will be different.
> The random number generator used in bash is seeded using a number that
> contains the PID of the current shell (as well as the current time).
>> Also, is the low bits of $RANDOM more random or the high bits of
>> $RANDOM more random. I see examples using $RANDOM%n to map the random
>> number to a smaller range. But my understanding in other random
>> numbers is that the high bits are more random and using the modulus is
>> discouraged. I am not sure what is the recommended usage of $RANDOM to
>> map it to a smaller range. Does anybody know the best use of $RANDOM
>> in this case? Thanks.
> The random number generator itself is short and has a reference to the
> relevant paper describing it.
>> --
>> Regards,
>> Peng
> --
> Kusalananda
> Sweden


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