Hi all. I hope nobody else makes the same stupid mistake that I did, but just in case:
For several hours today, I was unable to get Easel to connect to my xcarve even though I could see the arduino connected to COM3 in device manager. The machine setup would just hang after I entered the port number. I searched through the forum and checked all of my settings, made sure no physical connections were out of place, etc.
Long story short: I’d forgotten that I locked my computer down for travel a couple weeks ago, which included setting the external device policy in the BIOS to prevent serial port connections (in order to prevent rogue USB shenanigans). This still allowed Windows to see the xcarve, but prevented any actual communication with it.
So, if you’re a paranoid like me, and you can’t seem to connect to the xcarve even while it shows up in the device manager, check your device policy.