Something I'm not doing right with image masking

The image masking feature is great… when I get it to work! Something I’m clearly not doing right when it doesn;t work properly.
I’m trying to take a filled box image - let’s call it blackfilled.svg -and I want to take a mask that I have created with filled polylines, let’s call it whitemask.svg and have Lightburn leave me with blackfilled.svg and an empty white box in the middle. Blackfill.svg is imported to Lightburn as an image on its own image layer, and whiltemask is on a separate line layer.
I eventually found the hint on the forum that you take the whitemask.svg file, allocate it to a line layer e.g. c03, and with that layer selected, draw a rectangle around whitemask.svg larger than the outline of blackfilled.svg. then group the rectangle with whitemask.svg.
So far, so good and I have managed to get this working ok. However, it doesn’t work ALL the time for me.
a. Is there a special order of importing the images?
b. Do I have to draw the rectangle around whitemask.svg and group them together BEFORE importing blackfill.svg/
c. When selecting whitemask.svg and blackfill.svg, is there a special order of selection?
d. Does the outline of whitemask.svg have to be inside the outline of blackfill.svg?
e. When applying the mask, do the layers have to be in a specific order. I want to cut the mask before cutting blackfill.
I’ve done all the combinations of the above but every time I click on Tools, the apply Mask to Image item is greyed out. Well, not EVERY time. The frustration is that when the Apply option does appear i can’t recall what I did to get it. And more frustratingly, when I click Apply, the mask ISN’T applied and blackfill.svg stubbonly remains unmasked! But sometimes, it is, and it’s a bit like turning up the winning lottery number, such is my relief!
Another thing I’ve noticed when I have successfully masked blackfill on my CAD computer on which I have one copy of Lightburn and also store the lbms2 file. My laser cutter is in a different room and is attached to a second computer running Lightburn (both at v. 0.9.24). When I pull the lbms2 file with the masked blackfill image over to the second machine, the masking has disappeared. I then have to go through the rigamarole again of try to mask it on the second machine.
Any help gratefully received! Best wishes and keep up the good work!
Tony H, from a lonely croft in Highland Scotland…

Addendum… I think I may have just answered my own question. I started again with a blank Lightburn screen. As before I imported whitemask.svg first of all, which Lightburn allocated to layer C00. I then attempted to draw the rectangle around it, and noticed that Lightburn allocated it to a separate layer, as a Fill. It was only when I placed whitemask OFF layer C00 and on to C03 (for example), I could then draw the box around it. I grouped the rectangle and whitemask and then imported blackfill.svg to a separate image layer C07 (although Lightburn wanted to allocate it to C03 as an image). I attempted a mask and - bingo!, it worked.
One other experiment I haven;t yet tried but had tried in my diatribe above, is that there are other images in the output which are on separate line layers. For the purposes of masking I had turned them to unshow and I wondered if having them imported already might have affected the masking.
Anyway, I have got this working - for the moment - and, as I said earlier, it’s a great feature!

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