What Is a DLL?
It helps to understand the meaning of your error message before you start troubleshooting. DLL stands for dynamic link library. Essentially, these files are a core part of Windows, allowing programs to perform various functions without having to write them from scratch every time.
For example, when a program wants to display a message on the screen, it can access a DLL. It uses the appropriate DLL to create this box instead of the developer having to create a new box. This will increase the efficiency of programmers and achieve standardization under Windows.
But if something goes wrong, this dll file may be missing. And since many programs can share a DLL on your PC (even at the same time), a DLL error usually does not mean that only one application has a problem. This is part of what makes troubleshooting painful.
Common DLL Errors
As you can imagine, some DLLs appear in error messages more frequently than others. Below are some of the most common DLLs that cause problems.
MSVCP140, MSVCP120, MSVCP110, and MSVCP100
All four of these are different versions of the same DLL (14.0, 10.0, etc.). MSVC stands for Microsoft Visual C++, a very common Windows application format.
If you open the list of installed programs, you may see several entries labeled “Microsoft Visual C++ 20xx Redistributable”. Whenever you install a program that requires a specific version of this package, you will be prompted, otherwise it will not run.
Because so many applications use this file, it often has errors. Users report issues when launching Skype, WordPress applications, and various games.
These two DLLs are the companions mentioned above. CP stands for C++. These files contain libraries of C programming language. These two numbers are different versions of the same file. You may have installed multiple versions due to program compatibility.
Because these are common, errors are also common when starting various software.
The “link” in the dynamic link library exists for a reason. This is another DLL related to the first two. Versions 7 to 13 of the Visual C++ library DLL use different names for each version, resulting in the common files mentioned above. Starting from version 14, programs that use one of the two languages must be linked to another new DLL. Its name is VCRUNTIME, and it changes with each new version.
This error is known to occur when trying to run Adobe Creative Cloud software and Kodi.
This is a DLL with a different root. The DX in this file name refers to Microsoft DirectX, which is a set of APIs for running multimedia games and applications. The 43 in the title refers to a specific version, so you may also see it with a different number.
Because your computer only uses DirectX for these intensive programs, you may see this error when you start a video game.
Lame_enc is not an insult to your PC. It refers to the LAME encoder (LAME Ain`t an MP3 encoder) that can be used to convert audio software to MP3. Due to software patents, the program cannot legally contain MP3 encoding software. Therefore, you must install LAME yourself.
Most users who see this error will install LAME for use in Audacity. If you don’t use bold, you may see this error if you try to load or save MP3.
Before you follow all the troubleshooting steps below, make sure you actually have LAME installed. If you see a message from Audacity starting with Audacity does not export MP3 files directly…, download LAME and try again.
Probably the most serious defect in the list, NTDLL is a file that handles NT kernel functions. NT used to stand for new technology and was once part of the Windows product name, but now it is only included in the Windows technical information.
Errors in this DLL are usually caused by driver problems or problems with the program’s Windows interface. Because this file handles low-level system functions, a crash usually prevents Windows from starting.
How to Troubleshoot DLL Errors
Now that we have understood some of the most common errors, let’s take a look at the general troubleshooting process. Please note that these are general troubleshooting steps and may not apply to every error. However, if you receive an error message due to DLL Files Missing Errors, this sequence will help.
- Check for the missing DLL
- Install Windows updates
- Reinstall the affected program
- Update relevant drivers
- Perform a system file check
- Scan for malware
- Re-register the DLL
- Try a System Restore
- Reset Windows
Step 0: What Not to Do
When troubleshooting a DLL error, you will almost certainly come across a website that claims that all the problems can be solved by downloading the required DLL files. Do not download DLL files from these websites.
Like the driver update utility, you have no way of knowing where these sites get their DLLs. Therefore, they are almost certainly unofficial, usually outdated, and may contain malware. In addition, replacing a single DLL is usually not enough to solve your problem, which means finding a new DLL is a waste of time.
In addition, avoid jumping directly to the specific DLL file that caused the error, and do not go through the Windows registry. In most cases, these advanced steps are not necessary and can easily lead to further problems in the end.
Step 1: Reboot
As with most bug fixes, the first thing to do is to try to restart. If you are lucky, your problem is just a glitch, and restarting will solve it. Save your work, restart and try again, whichever caused the error.
Step 2: Check for the Missing DLL
This is unlikely because Windows uses a DLL to protect the folder, but you (or the program) may accidentally delete the DLL. Find the problematic DLL in the recycle bin, and if it is found there, restore it. If you think you deleted it but emptied the recycle bin, please use the recovery procedure.
Step 3: Install Windows Updates
Since many DLL Files Missing Errors are related to libraries distributed by Microsoft, you can fix the problem by downloading the latest version and checking for Windows updates. This is especially important if you postpone the installation of the update for a period of time.
After installing all available updates, restart the system to make sure they are applied.
Step 4: Reinstall the Affected Program
Sometimes a program is triggered when a DLL file is accessed. It is worth uninstalling the program that brought you the error and reinstalling a new copy. This may require some work, depending on the cause of the problem for you, but it is an important step.
Step 5: Update Relevant Drivers
If a DLL Files Missing Errors occurs when dealing with specific hardware, the corresponding driver should be updated. For example, if you keep getting errors every time you try to print, try updating the printer’s driver. If an error occurs during graphics-intensive tasks such as launching games, please update your graphics card driver.
Step 6: Perform a System File Check
Next, you should try to run the System File Checker (SFC) command. Therefore, Windows will check various system files and repair missing or damaged files.
Enter cmd in the start menu. Right-click the entry and select Run as administrator. Then enter the following command:
This scan will take a while, so please run it when you have a few minutes. When it is finished, Windows will notify you if it finds any problems.
Step 7: Scan for Malware
DLL Files Missing Errors are not necessarily caused by malware, but they can be. Maybe a past infection is corrupted or is now interfering with the DLL file. Run a scan with your antivirus software, then use the free version of Malwarebytes to get a second opinion to rule out this situation.
Step 8: Re-Register the DLL
At this point, it is worth unregistering the DLL file and re-registering it. This will force Windows to temporarily “forget” the DLL and restore the component, which may correct the problem.
Open another elevated command prompt by typing cmd in the Start menu, then right-clicking and selecting Run as administrator. Enter the following commands one by one and add the name of the problematic DLL:
regsvr32 /u FILENAME.dll regsvr32 FILENAME.dll
Step 9: Try a System Restore
If this error occurred recently, System Restore can take you back in time and hopefully solve the problem.
Go to the control panel in the start menu, open it and select restore. From here, select Open System Restore. Follow the instructions to choose a recovery time and let Windows complete the process.
Step 10: Reset Windows
At this point, you have completed almost all troubleshooting tasks. If you are sure that you have installed all available Windows and driver updates, reinstalled the program, tried the command prompt utility, and restarted (recently), you should continue to reset Windows.
Fortunately, you can use the Reset this PC feature to reinstall a fresh copy of Windows without deleting your personal files. Hope it will never happen. But after completing all the above troubleshooting, the best way is to reset it to avoid wasting more time troubleshooting.
What DLL Errors Drive You Crazy?
Now you know the root causes of some common DLL errors and how to fix them. Unfortunately, these issues are some of the most frustrating, so we wish you luck. Hope that with some quick updates and restarts, your problem will disappear.