Current situation, still having not run purge/reinstall:
Over time, the latency of transparency on initial opening of an explorer window has shortened to a few milliseconds with an initial flash of white in each frame. It seems that if a sufficient period of time has passed since last launch the initial launch trans works.
If I close the initially-opened explorer window and immediately launch Explorer again, transparency will not appear until a click event, on Explorer itself, another window or taskbar for example.
If I launch additional instances of Explorer after transparency is active (either with initial launch or a click event), transparency only appears in the additional instances with a click event.
Tried to do a SS of 2 Explorer windows side by side showing this, but just pressing the CTRL key triggers trans to appear in the second Explorer window so add keystrokes to clicks as triggers for the trans appearing.
I'm not knowingly running folders as a separate process; not sure where that setting resides.
Thanks again, Neil. Hope this is of some help.