FreeCell is based on a card game called "Eight-Off" which is a variation of Solitare. Originally developed in 1978 by Paul Alfille for the PLATO computer system, FreeCell was later implemented by Microsoft's Jim Horne for Win32s. In the Win32s version, a max of 32,000 deals were available, of which only one (#11,982) was never solved. FreeCell remained relatively unchanged until it's release with Windows XP, when the number of deals rose to one million. The most recent changes to FreeCell came with its release alongside Windows Vista, where there is now a hint system, and a unlimited number of move retractions.
FreeCell is played with a standard 52-card deck, dealt into eight cascades, with all cards dealt face-up. There are 4 empty "cells" and 4 empty "foundations" at the stop of the table. The foundations are used for stacking the "played" cards, in acending order, starting with the Ace. The cells are used as a kind of standby area, where a card can be placed to allow the player to order the cards in the playfield. The game is finished when all cards are built into the 4 foundation piles in acending order, starting with the Ace of each suit.