Ok, after way too much work (reinstalling windows, etc.) I tracked it down as follows:
1) It appears that the USB 2.0 ports do not like the eggbot – when I switched to the 3.0 ports, it worked better.
2) You were right about using the older version of inkscape .48.2 works, along with the eggbot extensions you sent me.
This is using the 32 bit version on my 64 bit windows 8.1 since I couldn’t find a 64 bit version of 48.2. So it might also be related to the 64 bit version as well.
Anyway, things seem to be working now.
Happy New Year!