I also had this issue with Steam. As you said, there are a few workarounds, but let's find a solution.
Before trying any steps, make sure Steam is not running. You may need to finish the processes with Task Manager.
Now, let's remove the cache. Open your Steam Installation Directory (Most likely
C:/Program Files (x86)/Steam/) and delete the entire
If that did not work, let's reinstall Steam. Be aware that if you want to keep your games installed, you must copy the content of
C:/Program Files (x86)/Steam/steamapps/common/ to a safe place and move them back after Steam is successfully reinstalled (read more about it here). Now, run the uninstall.exe file located inside your Steam Installation Directory (Again, most likely
C:/Program Files (x86)/Steam/). Next step, download the installer from the official website and run it.
If the issue persists after reinstalling Steam, it might be an OS problem. I'm aware that this issue is happening on multiple accounts/machines/OSes, but let's give these steps a try:
Assuming you're running Windows: open the Command Prompt as Administrator. Click here to learn how.
On the new CMD window, run the command
sfc /scannow. It may take some time to complete, but when it is done, run
DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth. Make sure you have a working internet connection. Also, check if there are any available updates on Windows Update. You may need to restart your device.
If none of the above worked: Go to Your Steam Installation Directory and rename the file
Still having issues? Go to Your Steam Installation Directory and locate
steamerrorreporter.exe. Run that application and check if Steam is properly starting.
Please, let me know how it goes.