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An unsolvable instance of Freecell: a game from Windows'95

This document was generated using the LaTeX2HTML translator Version 95.1 (Fri Jan 20 1995) Copyright © 1993, 1994, Nikos Drakos, Computer Based Learning Unit, University of Leeds.

The command line arguments were:
latex2html freecellhtml.tex.

The translation was initiated by Hans Bodlaender on Fri Jul 12 16:18:16 MDT 1996
Actually, this isn't totally true, because some things didn't work correctly, and the final html-file was hand-edited somewhat producing the result you can now observe.


  1. Freecell site. Maintained by Michael Keller. Look here if you want to find a solution for a hard to solve number.
  2. Play Freecell on the WWW.
  3. Brainjam. Game related to Freecell.
  4. Freecell Pro. Freeware freecell program.


The starting position here actually does not occur as one of the positions generated by the Freecell program. The position 11982 actually is proved to be unsolvable, by exhaustive computer search. Follow the link above, and links reachable from there. In addition, the newer versions of the program have positions numbered -1 and -2, which are also unsolvable.

Ron Davis wrote me:

Although the help file conjectures that all games ar winnable, if the player chooses "Select Game" and enters the number -1 or -2, an unwinnable layout is set up. These layouts are similar to the one you have conceived.

One other undocumented feature is what happens when you press Shift-Ctrl-F10 during a game, then make a move.

Hans Bodlaender
Fri Jul 12 16:18:16 MDT 1996. Removed unreachable link January 25, 1999. Last modified: March 28, 2005.