Since you siad you can access the Start page without issues, this definitely sounds like a Windows 7 firewall issue. I’m more of a linux/mac guy so I can’t walk you through it, however, check the Windows firewall settings. If you’re on a trusted LAN, maybe you can even temporarily disable the firewall and see if that solves the issue.
since i am seeing some of the same issues and its not firewall related he may have a defective software load on the BBB
also firefox does not seem to work on windows 7 to talk to the beagle bone and you should give chrome a try
Honestly, it always seems to work well with my linux box, but occasionally the Mac won’t initialize the USB network device. That said, I would try updating the MMC with the latest image. It’s possible your device got loaded with a bad image. The instructions on how to do it are available on the welcome page.