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Someone on this list once said that a performance argument requires
performance measurement.

Here it is on a 550 Mhz machine.

This is using an RDTSC  timer. Times are microseconds
averaged over 7 executions.

non existing file fopen 205
existing fopen and close 140
existing fopen fgetc and close 196

non existing access() 89
existing access() 53

non existing LoadLibrary() 1,752
existing LoadLibrary() 12,206

The difference between LoadLibrary() and LoadLibraryEx()  is
not worth publishing.

So, I take back most of what I said. 
LoadLibrary() is not a good choice for searching and readibility checking.

access() is faster than fopen (4 fold) for existing fiiles, however
fopen() is pretty