MMC snap-in and side-by-side errors


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Sep 21, 2020
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Hi,
About a week ago when I shut down the computer for the evening it was working fine.
I'm running Windows 7 on a 64-bit machine.

On startup the next day it was slow and took about a half hour before I could do anything
with it. I tried running some python script in visual studio code but it wouldn't run.
It said python wasn't installed. (it is) To boil down the story, depending on what I'm
trying to do I either get the error

"MMC could not create the snap-in" or I get

"The application has failed to start because its side-by-side configuration is
incorrect. Please see the application event log or use the command-line
sxstrace.exe tool for more detail".

When I try to reinstall the C++ libraries it goes thru the extract but then I get
the second error, once for each of the 18 packages it's trying to install.

I've done a CHKDSK from the command prompt which fixed a lot of stuff and allowed
it to startup much faster. I've done an sxs /scannow which also cleaned things up.
I've done an sxstrace which said that this file:

x86_microsoft.windows.c..-controls.resources_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.7600.16385_en-us_581cd2bf5825dde9.manifest

had a syntax error in line 0. I can't open this file using anything on the affected
computer. Bringing the file to another computer it either shows it as empty or with
a line of boxes. I found this same file on the other computer and tried to use it as a
replacement on the affected computer but it said I don't have permission. I'm already
logged in as the administrator so what's up with that?

There was also a registry entry:

Fx:{b05566-ad-fe-9c-4363-be05-7a4cbb7cb510}

that one site recommended that could be deleted (after exporting it for safety first).
Doing that didn't seem to fix anything.

I've made sure that .net Framework 3.5.1 is checked. Nothing.

Trying to look in Event viewer is no good. It won't run and gives me the snap-in
error.

Any programs I try to use (Notepad, Textpad, etc) with any of these affected files won't
run. The only thing that seems to run just fine is the browser.

Between the 2 errors I'm kind of in a catch-22 situation. Any ideas how to fix all this? TIA
 
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