Microsoft has included its Solitaire card game in Windows for a long time, and it has been one of the most popular computer games. It was first introduced with Windows 3.0, and users had been getting slightly updated versions all the way up to Windows 7. Then the company discontinued the classic, starting with Windows 8.x and Windows 10, and replaced it with a Windows Store app, which now is called "Microsoft Solitaire Collection."

Although the new app is free and includes a few other classic card games, it also comes with advertisements that can be removed with a paid subscription, which also adds additional features that probably you don't need.

If you feel a little nostalgic, or you simply don't like the version with ads, you can bring back the good ol' Solitaire game to Windows 10.

In this Windows 10 guide, we walk you through the steps to play the classic Solitaire game included on Windows XP on your Windows 10 device.

How to bring back classic Solitaire to Windows 10

Before you proceed there is one caveat: You need to have access to a computer running Windows XP to extract the game files needed to return Solitaire to Windows 10.

If you don't have an old computer with Windows XP, there are various ways to get the files. One of them includes creating a virtual machine to extract the files. If you need the Windows XP installation media, there are also ways to get it, but the easiest way is to download the ISO from Microsoft if you have an MSDN subscription.

You may also be able to find the files on the internet, but that's a process we don't recommend.

While in Windows XP, do the following:

  1. Open Windows Explorer.
  2. On the left pane, click on My Computer.
  3. On the right, double-click Local Disk (C:).

  4. Double-click the Windows folder.
  5. Scroll and double-click the System32 folder.

  6. Click the Search button.
  7. On the left pane, click the All files and folders option.

  8. In the search box type the following file names:

    cards.dll, sol.exe

  9. Click the Search button.

  10. Copy the cards.dll and sol.exe files to a USB flash drive.
  11. On your Windows 10 PC, connect the USB flash drive with the files.
  12. Open File Explorer.
  13. On This PC, double-click Local Disk (C:).
  14. Click the New folder button in the ribbon menu to create a folder and name it Solitaire.

  15. Open the USB flash drive and copy cards.dll and sol.exe to the Solitaire folder you created in the previous step.

Once you complete these steps, double-click the sol.exe file to start playing the classic Solitaire game on Windows 10. And, yes, your game settings will be preserved.

If you want to have quicker access to the game, just open the Solitaire folder, right-click and drag the sol.exe file to the desktop, and click the Create shortcuts here option to create a shortcut.

Microsoft also released updated versions of the classic Solitaire fame for Windows Vista and Windows 7, but it's not as easy to make them work on Windows 10. If you want the real classic, the one in Windows XP is one you want anyway.

More Windows 10 resources

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