First Setup - Stuck at Xenon is scanning for mesh networks to join - there aren't any

New to Particle, started through the web quick start for Xenon, got the Android app, walking through the system/prompts. I was thinking to myself this is nice and easy, well guided, etc, after having just lost two days to a different set of open/community hardware/software that was a disaster.

So far, so good. Get it paired, update the firmware, then get to the “Your Xenon is scanning for mesh networks to join”. Now it’s been sitting here for 30 minutes, with no change. There aren’t any networks to join, this is my first device. My options are to cancel setup, or continue waiting…

Xenon, don’t know what firmware it has, just updated in the app. Flashing blue.
Android, 9
Particle App, 2.3.11

The webpage wants to walk me through the first device setup again, wanting to text me the link to the app and such. It shows no devices.

Canceling setup in the app restarts the same sequence but without the firmware upgrade step. It shows no devices.

Pushing the buttons on the device appears to have no effect, the right one resets(?), re-inits USB(?), something, but no change in behavior.

So I found the CLI instructions…

Use the Windows installer, it installs but fails to update the path, apparently a common problem with Nullsoft and open/community projects. Conveniently the instructions talk about where it’s installed, but don’t handle the path problem, nor point out that it’s install directory isn’t the executable directory, ie …\bin.

Another part of the installer failed to update the path, likely the OpenSSL portion. No idea what path that is supposed to have added.

So I run particle setup, login, it tells me to hold the mode/setup button until it blinks blue. Well, it’s already blinking blue. So I hold it a little, no change, hold it approximately 10 seconds, and it fast blinks 10(?) times, and goes back to the about once per second blue blink, no change. Tried power cycling, tried pressing the reset button, tried holding the reset button, no change.

Particle setup again confirms if you want to use the logged in account, yes, gives the same messages, no change.

particle list says no devices found.

particle flash my_new_device_name tinker - asks what type of device, allowing Photon/Core/P1/Electron, so skip that.

Try the compile “blinky.ino” and load, compile works fine, load fails, “I didn’t recognize that device name or ID”, with a URL that gives back an empty JSON response. I’m assuming I haven’t named it since the particle setup didn’t work…

It is not possible to use a Xenon standalone at this time.

A Xenon can only by used with a mesh gateway (Argon or Boron) or in an Ethernet FeatherWing and connected by Ethernet to the Internet.