Brand New ESP32S dead?!

I just opened my 32S from HiLetgo and was very displeased to find the thing doesn't work, other buyers of this clearly commented it works out of the box. However, when I go to upload Blink, I get this omnious error:

A fatal error occurred: Failed to connect to ESP32: Timed out waiting for packet header

Is the unit dead?


Does it light the LED?

I got one with a bad USB cable.

Try with a known good cable...

The power light comes on, that's it. I thought they all had blink pre-loaded, but nothing blinking here. I;ve ran lots of sketches through this cable.
I think it's fried. I've had terrible luck with the ESP modules...

You have to hold the prog or flash button when connecting...._____.... shows up. I did not think that was necessary on the ESP32.

On a ESP32 (as in the bare WROOM module) then you do.

On some breakout boards which have a ESP32 on them you dont but on some you may have to, depends how they were designed.

It does get confusing when people refer to the various ESP32 breakout boards as 'ESP32'.