Wow, I got pretty lucky with my trip to BB.
I printed out that sheet I linked to, the BB report about the problem and the DEVO status. Even though it's no longer DEVO, it still brought it just because it explained it wasn't my fault by dropping it or something.
So I come in with that, the original box and the machine.
Went straight to the Geeks section. A lady came up to see what we needed. I said I have a warranty and there is a defect with the laptop, pointed to the crack, then I showed her the paper report.
She then looked at the paper and went off somewhere. Minutes later she came back with two options. She said I could either have it sent for repairs or exchange it for any other laptop upto the price on my original reciept ($1549)
She then said to go choose something and that she'd move my old laptop to the return section and to go there when I find something.
I went around and didn't see any laptops that matched my specs for the price besides the Gateway 7405GX, the newer e-machine. There was a nice HP which had a 3400+ athlon and 100gig, so a little better that the gateway, but the tradeoff was a lowly mx440 graphics card. So I sticked with the Gateway to keep the 9600.
They didn't have it instock unfortunatly, so we had someone fill out the order and gave us the papers to take upto the return area.
Now here's where I got lucky. As the worker started going through the process she mumbled to someone that this was service only. I got worried for a second, what if they were about to tell me they can't do this. She got more help, I could hear her say something like she can't devo this. They never asked me any questions or said they couldn't do it, they kept to themselves as I tried to listen. Oh, they did ask me if I was exchanging it because I heard of the problem or if it has already happened, which it has
I noticed on the screen facing me had an odd $250 open box fee. She then had to get someone to overide that or something else to finish the transaction. The manager came by, she told him she needs to do and exchange and pointed to the paper I brought. He just said, oh of course and typed something in. Few minutes later it was all done.
I was worried there for a while that they would say they couldn't do the exchange and my only option would be service. But they kept there word. I guess when I brought in that paper the lady must have only asked someone how to proceed and never checked to see if that devo status had changed. So they offered me the exchange before they new it was no longer devo
Also a note, even though the new gateway was $150 less than my original purchase I don't get back any extra cash, but my reciept still says the more expensive price incase there needs to be another exchange in the future. And the warranty just transfered over too.
I just went from a 6805 to the 7405GX. Which means I went from a 3000+ to 3200+, 60gig to 80gig, and DVD/CD-R combo to DVD-+RW. The laptop screen seems to have that glossy cover too, x-brite something it's called.
So I'm really happy, I went in there with only a feeling of a 10% chance of an exchange, and it almost didn't happen.
Now, my experience does say the laptops are no longer DEVO, they just didn't catch it in time before they could back out of their offer. So if you have to go in, print out that paper and hopefully they will go with that before finding out it's no longer devo. Again, I just planned to bring that paper in to prove I didn't drop the thing and that it was a real defect.
Can't wait for it to arrive on the 10th.