I made some exceptions in the anti-virus and it didn't seem to make a difference. The usb drive was seated properly and the server info is correct on the player and the server has a static IP.
I did, however, swap out the player with one of a pair that I recently received. It came with a different USB dongle than the one I've been working on. This pair has a note "DO NOT REMOVE" sticker on the dongle itself, while the other just looks like a normal compact USB drive.
See the pic below... is it possible that I have a "sneakernet" only USB drive for the device on the right? If so, is it possible to swap it out? Just a note also, I did have a standalone project on this device previously just as a test.
I wouldn't think that would make a difference, but just something else I could think of that might prevent it from displaying properly.
The newly installed player (like the one on the left) picked right up and is displaying properly.
Thanks for the patience and all the help. Any further info appreciated.