I found some resources that might shed light on this problem, and possibly provide a solution:
I have downloaded and tried to use a utility called OPC Expert, and it found one OLE server on the computer, but it was by National Instruments. The program supposedly needs Microsoft .NET 3.5 specifically, and this computer has 4.5, so that might be the problem. I am trying to install it.
For some reason that didn't seem to work. But I used the task manager on my Win7 machine and my Win8 laptop, and noticed some differences. The Win7 computer has a DCOM Launcher and a COMMSysApp for COM+ Events. The Win8 machine does not have these, but instead has a "COM Surrogate" and a "COM+ System Application". And it also has a "Service Host: DCOM Service Process Launcher"
Just now I tried once again, and when I tried to connect, my application said "Requires Elevation". So I ran it as administrator, and it connected. But when it tried to do an Autosave, I got a message "Call was rejected by callee".
So I also tried to connect PADS Logic to PADS Layout, and it now works! I did install updates and restarted the computer, so something may have been messed up. I also have both Powerlogic and PowerPCB set up to run as administrator, and I'm not sure if that was previously done.
So, at least the PADS suite now works on my Win8 machine. But I will add below some links that I found in reference to this problem. Even though I don't need them now, they may be of some help in the future:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/86008 (OLE Concepts and Requirements - mostly for XP?)
olesvr.dll - What is olesvr.dll? (OLE Server)
Distributed Component Object Model (DCOM - Windows 2000?)
https://linustechtips.com/main/topic/228331-windows-8-and-81-com-surrogate-dllhost-error/ (COM Surrogate and dllhost - Win8.x)
http://stackoverflow.com/questions/4897685/how-do-i-register-a-dll-file-on-windows-7-64-bit (Register DLL file on 32 bit and 64 bit Windows)
The last link is very interesting. It shows that 32 bit and 64 bit dlls are handled differently and strangely, perhps:
Part of the confusion regarding regsvr32 is that on 64-bit windows the name and path have not changed, but it now registers 64-bit DLLs. The 32-bit regsvr32 exists in SysWOW64, a name that appears to represent 64-bit applications. However the WOW64 in the name refers to Windows on Windows 64, or more explicity Windows 32-bit on Windows 64-bit. When you think of it this way the name makes sense even though it is confusing in this context.