In response to "Escalation" from The Escapist Forum: Of the four 360's I've received from the service center, only the last one was the same as the one I had sent in. That particular console was actually a DOA that I received from the service center after a six week wait, necessitating another round of Xbox "support", whereupon that one was actually fixed about a month later.
Regardless of the hardware issues though, the Xbox Live Marketplace DRM is turning out to be a much bigger problem, especially for those with shared 360s (families, roommates, dorms, etc.) My family's been locked out of ~$200 worth of XBLM content for upwards of five months in the last year alone.
There are currently two methods to restore XBLM access, both of which are tortuous, painful and error-prone, seemingly by design due to the sheer volume of delays, roadblocks, and outright lies told by "support" personnel.
The first method, which used to be the only method, is now frowned upon by Microsoft and only applied sparingly. Essentially, you have to create another Xbox Live account and Microsoft will give you Points codes to apply to that account to repurchase your content with. You'll need to use a different account each time you go through this process. Unfortunately, this is the most painful "solution", as Microsoft's become very stingy with this solution for a variety of reasons. Microsoft claims that over 90% of the refunded Points are spent on new content, not the content for which they were issued; I dispute that claim, as some of my previously purchased content is now free or reduced in price.
The second method, introduced this past May, requires the service center to replace your old console ID in the DRM database with your new console ID (since they're still replacing most 360's). There are a couple of problems with this "solution": The first is that the service center is not uniformly performing this step on every console. The second is that the console ID switch only applies to the most recently serviced console; if you purchased most of your content on a console prior to the one just sent in for service, that content is not unlocked on your replacement console.
Also, if you replace your 360 with a different model through a retailer's warranty exchange program, Microsoft will flat-out refuse to help you at all. They claim that this "upgrade" irrefutably voids your XBLM rights.
They've started ignoring BBB complaints within the past six months. I was only able to fully resolve my DRM problems this time around by contacting my state's Attorney General's office.
It's just a matter of time before a class-action lawsuit or a bunch of media attention gets Microsoft to remedy this once & for all. A user-initiated DRM transfer would be preferable, as it would eliminate Microsoft's outsourced "support" for this particular problem altogether.
Guys. It's Microsoft.
Is anyone actually surprised things have gone ass up?