Yes, it was completely up to date and worked like a charm. It's only since my hard drive was wiped and restored to factory that I can't reinstall iTunes successfully (trying to install latest version),
So just to make my situation clearer - as I realize my original post might be confusing:
1- iTunes was installed and worked perfect for about 2 years
2- computer sent for service, hard drive wiped and restored to factory
3- reinstalled my computer with the EXACT same setup as it had before the wipe, but the latest version of iTunes installs but will not work - see problems above.
4- I tried the fixes on the two threads you referenced, with no success.
5- on the affected computer, iPod nano 1G works, nano 5G doesn't. However, on a different computer, both work fine.