Can confirm I'm also missing the equipment box, and have installed the client on two different machines with the same problem. If I right click gear it then equips it but I don't get the gear I was currently wearing (before live went down) back in my inventory.
If you are missing any frames delete your ElderlandsConfig.oml file
I have followed your instructions. In fact I had just installed Elderlands/LO again as I did a fresh windows install. I am curious will we be able to move the play area again? Also if the hot bar must stay, could you add an equipment button. Hot Keys to open backpack and equipment don't seem to work unfortunately.