I'm using a 64-bit Acer laptop running Windows 8.1.
When I try to start certain desktop apps, I get the error message (translated:)
This application could not be started because the Side-by-Side Configuration is invalid. You can find further information in the Application Event Log. More details can be shown with the command-line tool sxstrace.exe.
For example, Chrome, Firefox, Skype, Word, LibreOffice, and my CLISP GUI give me this message. Internet Explorer for desktop just opens very briefly and then closes without an error message. Internet Explorer in Metro mode works fine. My R GUI, any C++ executables that I made myself, and the command line can start up just fine.
The two ways that I've tried fixing this are (1) uninstalling and reinstalling the troubled programs, and (2) uninstalling and reinstalling my MS VC++ distributables. Neither way worked, however, because I cannot seem to uninstall anything -- when I click "deinstall", I get the error message
Error 1719. The Windows Installer Service could not be acessed. This can occur if you are running Windows in safe mode, or if the Windows Installer is not correctly installed. Contact your support personnel for assistance.
I think that Control Panel lists MS VC++ 2008 x86, 2010 x86, and 2010 x64 as installed; however, I tried to reinstall them from the internet with
vcredist_x64.exe anyhow. This executable fails with the Side-by-Side Configuration message. I've also tried running the Microsoft Fixit program from the internet, to remedy the Windows Installer issue, but with the same error message.
I've tried using the
sxstrace tool, but I can't get it to do anything. I'll type
sxstrace trace -logfile:"C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe", but it just says
Error with "StartTrace". Errormessage: Connection refused.
I've also tried using
sfc to handle the Windows Installer issue; I'll type
sfc /scannow and wait for it to do its scanning things, but no luck. It finds damaged files, but cannot repair them. The CBS log is a huge mess that I cannot read, but I could post it here.
Shortly before all this started happening, I had tried to run the automatic-updater on my computer to install the most recent Windows updates. This is the only thing that I can think of that might have caused the problem, but I'm not at all sure.
Thank you very much for any advice you may have!