Honestly, as good as Avisynth is, the developers of these filters are making it more and more complicated and miserable.
All I wanted was QTGMC in order to address some issues.
Well that required an updated version of this plugin and that plugin, and that dependency and the other dependency.
Of course, I had to download updated versions in my plug-ins folder which resulted in one error being addressed, but not another one.
In the long run, I wound up with crap (I still don't have QTGMC working, due to other errors), and now a few of my go-to filters (such as McTemporalDenoise and Smdegrain) are NOT working because of one error or another resulting from me installing updated versions of dependencies.
So I go to github to download the LATEST version of masktools2 only to get the same shitty-ass error.
Why can't these developers just make 2 or 3 versions AND LEAVE IT AT THAT!!! Every time they get an itch in their ass they update, and update, and update, and then they make updates TO THE UPDATE, and it results in confusion and total shit.
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FWIW, I never update my computers or programs unless there is a major new feature that will change my life. My main computer still runs XP (it also has a Win 7 boot drive that I use when forced into it). I have not updated it for over a decade (I think I bought it in 2008), other than to replace and upgrade a slowly failing CPU about four months ago.
The reason I don't update is that I've noted that people who do update every time the new release comes out spend an inordinate amount of time trying to get things to work again, after the update breaks them.
Having said this, I obviously do sometimes have to update and as a result have definitely experienced the situation you describe.
Here is my solution.
What I do is to create folders for certain AVISynth plugins that have lots of dependencies, and I include in each of these folders ALL of the dependent DLLs required for that plugin. QTGMC is the poster boy for this. Yes, this means that I have to explicitly load the plugins, but that only takes 2-3 minutes to add those lines to the script, and it sure beats going through "DLL hell" and it avoids breaking something else that worked, something that happens if the older version of some program doesn't like the new DLL.
I can't remember at the moment, but I'm pretty sure I specified an "autoload" folder in some setup file and can't at the moment remember if there is an easy way to undo that. I also can't remember if the order of DLL loading precedent starts with the explicitly loaded DLLs, then the current folder, and only then the autoload folder. If so, your advice is the better way to go.
My project needs FilterX, which I've never used.
But FilterX needs DLL1 to be updated
Updating DLL1 breaks FilterY, so FilterY needs update.
But FilterZ has no update, and to use it, must store old DLL1 (henceforth DLL2) elsewhere, call it separate.
To use both Y+Z together in same script, even more scripting-fu skills are needed to juggle DLL1+DLL2.
Every time they get an itch in their ass they update, and update, and update, and then they make updates TO THE UPDATE, and it results in confusion and total shit.
Wow, I thought I was going to get the typical self-righteous sermons about how I "don't take the time to read the documentation" (as if there is any, as Smurfy put it). But lo and behold, the "Pep Boys" of Videohelp (including Smurfy) are in agreement with me here! Okay, not bad. After a few months of laying low, I feel like started off on the right foot here.
Because you all know that my plight is your plight.