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Fix: Api-ms-win-crt-heap-l1-1-0.dll or api-ms-win-crt-runtime-l1-1-0.dll is missing

When you run a program on a computer running Windows 8.1 or earlier, you may see an error denoting that the module api-ms-win-crt-heap-l1-1-0.dll or api-ms-win-crt-runtime-l1-1-0.dll is missing. Here’s the full error message verbatim:

The program can’t start because api-ms-win-crt-heap-l1-1-0.dll is missing from your computer. Try reinstalling the program to fix this problem.
The program can’t start because api-ms-win-crt-runtime-l1-1-0.dll is missing from your computer. Try reinstalling the program to fix this problem.

For example, these errors may occur when playing online games or while running programs that were compiled using Microsoft Visual Studio 2015 & Windows 10 SDK — e.g., Office Word, Excel, Access, Skype, QGIS, Apple iTunes, or Adobe products.

These DLL missing errors usually indicate that the VC++ runtime libraries are missing. A runtime library is a collection of files (usually .dll files) used by some programs at run-time to provide one or more native program functions or services.

Uninstalling and reinstalling the respective program can help in cases where the software vendor has packaged the runtime library within the installer.

Many users have attempted to download and install the Visual C++ Redistributable for Visual Studio 2015. However, this may not resolve the issue. This article tells you how to fix the above errors easily using an update released by Microsoft.

Resolution

The api-ms-win-crt-heap-l1-1-0.dll or api-ms-win-crt-runtime-l1-1-0.dll missing errors mostly occur on Windows 8.1 and earlier systems. Microsoft Visual Studio 2015 creates a dependency on the Universal CRT when applications are built by using the Windows 10 Software Development Kit (SDK).

To resolve the problem, you’ll need to install the Universal C Runtime (CRT) update on earlier Windows operating systems to enable these applications to run correctly.

The Windows 10 Universal CRT is a Windows operating system component that enables CRT functionality on the Windows operating system. This update allows Windows desktop applications that depend on the Windows 10 Universal CRT release to run on earlier Windows operating systems.

Here’s the list of modules added or updated by the Universal C Runtime update:

Api-ms-win-crt-conio-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-convert-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-environment-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-filesystem-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-heap-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-locale-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-math-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-multibyte-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-private-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-process-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-runtime-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-stdio-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-string-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-time-l1-1-0.dll
Api-ms-win-crt-utility-l1-1-0.dll
Ucrtbase.dll

For more information, expand the File information section in the above Microsoft article to view the list of file names included in the package for each Operating System.

Additional Note

Windows 10 includes the api-ms-win-crt-heap-l1-1-0.dll file by default. Here’s the module information from a Windows 10 v2004 computer:

c:\windows\syswow64\downlevel\api-ms-win-crt-runtime-l1-1-0.dll:
Verified: Signed
Signing date: 6:13 AM 12/7/2019
Publisher: Microsoft Windows
Company: Microsoft Corporation
Description: ApiSet Stub DLL
Product: Microsoft« Windows« Operating System
Prod version: 10.0.19041.1
File version: 10.0.19041.1 (WinBuild.160101.0800)
MachineType: 32-bit

c:\windows\system32\downlevel\api-ms-win-crt-runtime-l1-1-0.dll:
Verified: Signed
Signing date: 6:27 AM 12/7/2019
Publisher: Microsoft Windows
Company: Microsoft Corporation
Description: ApiSet Stub DLL
Product: Microsoft« Windows« Operating System
Prod version: 10.0.19041.1
File version: 10.0.19041.1 (WinBuild.160101.0800)
MachineType: 64-bit

Hope that helps!

(Last reviewed on 24-June-2022)

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