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Hi Mark, Raspbian comes with a raspberry pi edition of RealVnc installed and as far as I know other VNC services will conflict with it and cause issues. I would try uninstalling the ones you have installed and going to the Preferences menu and Raspberry pi Configuration and then enabling VNC in the interfaces section. Also check that ssh is enabled. Then try RealVNC on windows. I use RealVNC on Android and it works fine.
The systemctl should come back with a line starting with "Synchronizing state for hostapd.service with sysvinit using update-rc.d ....etc" not that I have noticed systemd-sysv-install before on my systems. It is a process systemd uses to activate non systemd services.

When you enabled autohotspot it should have come back with a line starting with "created symlink from /etc/systemd/system/....etc"

What happens when you deactivate your router or make a false ssid and manually run sudo /usr/bin/autohotspot does it respond with any messages?
and does it create the hotspot?

If you run sudo systemctl status autohotspot does it say active(exited) in green

I would say that the autohotspot script or service has an error causing it not to run. At initial boot dhcpcd will activate the network then autohotspot will assess the situation and switch if required.
So initially network is available as it would be without the script.

Other causes could be if any of the
downloaded config file or scripts were opened in windows and re-saved it can alter some of the characters such as swapping between ' and ` which causes errors and the line ends are different.

you can also try sudo systemctl stop autohotspot and then sudo systemctl start autohotspot and then sudo systemctl status autohotspot and see if that works ok.

Let me know what feed back you get and I will look into it further.