can't update WiFi co-processor firmware; corrupted Serial.print() ?

From a newbie retired EE - first - thank you guys for all you do! Lot of work. Your job must be like my position on Moab, UT city council - doesn't pay much and a lot of work too, you find the satisfaction when you can.

I suspect an incompatabiliy between WiFiNINA library , WiFI firmware, something corrupting Serial.print().

Using IDE 2.0.0-beta.4 IDE under WIN10, Nano IoT board using COM3, WiFiNINA library v. 1.8.5.
That library recently updated to v. 1.8.7, the latest, but no difference in problems below.

Trying Example WiFiNINA sketch AP_SimpleWebServer.ino;
That sketch says WiFi firmware should be updated.
CheckFirmwareVersion.ino says I'm using v. 1.2.3, should be using latest v. 1.4.3.
Attempted to use (WiFi) FirmwareUpdater.ino , but it shows no output at all on Serial Monitor from Serial.print().
See Serial corruption possibilities below.
Further use of CheckFirmwareVersion.ino shows no change in firmware.

How do I get FirmwareUpdater.ino to work?

Clues:

In AP_SimpleWebServer, the first "do something" call to the WiFiNINA library, a call to WiFi.beginAP() not only doesn't connect to a WiFi access point, it doesn't return what you expect (WL_LISTENING instead of WL_CONNECTED), and it typically clears any Serial Monitor text made with Serial.print() before the call to .beginAP().

In general I'm having trouble uploading WiFi sketches, COM5 or 6 instead of the proper COM3.
Erratic / bizarre COM / Serial operation.
Double clicking Nano's Reset button to get the bootloader to run before an Upload helps sometimes,
but not always.

Thanks again!
Moab Mike

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