Silly Admin Trick: Random Character Generator

Sometimes what is so easy in other languages and scripting tools can be a real pain in Apex and Formula Fields. I am talking about random character generation. Not sure why this is not a method but have used this trick a couple of times and in doing some reading it actually taking about 1/10 the computing power to generate versus creating a long string of characters and randomly picking out of it which seems to be a popular programing pattern.

Blob blobKey = crypto.generateAesKey(128);
String updateKey = EncodingUtil.base64encode(blobKey);
updateKey = updateKey.left(10);

Quick easy and simple. I added the third line to get a more manageable size of code but it’s a great way to stamp a key on records when doing parent/child updates where you want to make sure that all the records are actually getting updated.

And as always this is the source URL:

(Update 2019): Another method:

Datetime uniqueDate =;
String uniqueUser = uniqueDate.format(‘MMddyyyHHmmss’);

Internet started as a place of knowledge, I’m just paying it forward.

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