New user difficulty connecting to Mission Planner

New to this forum and I’ve consulted and advanced user prior to posting, verified connections, drivers and connecting hardware. I cannot get MP to load firmware, stopping me from advancing forward. latest ver, of MP and several USB’s later still no success. i hate asking this question but I’m out of options after 2 days and so is my friend. I can get different amounts of packets but never a full download or MavLink connect. Any clues going forward would be appreciated.

what error message do you recieve?

Just in case:

Firmware is loaded without Mavlink connected.