Hey guys, just updated my ray with the steps above.
It took a while to learn everything from scratch, but I found the guide to be very helpful.
For the record, here were the gotcha's that I got from doing this:
1. I updated to 4.0.4 from the stock gingerbread build which ran the zergrush exploit to root it. My phone has it's bootloader locked.
2. The 4.0.3A file I got was a bit annoying to get from the 4share sites, since it asked for signing up and I really didnt want to do it. Downloaded it from somewhere else.
3. When I ran the run.bat file, it seems on the last reboot, my phone didnt reboot until I hit the enter key first, then it logged me a message about root and its groups. I thought it was waiting for a reboot on its own before I hit the last enter key to reboot, but it did it anyways.
4. After the flash with the flashtool, the log message said my phone was rebooting, but I found that it did not. I just simply unplugged the cable and manually restarted and voila! All the fun and goodness.
5. While I flashed to 4.0.3, the "about the phone" on my phone stated the package was still 4.0.4 (the letter B was on the build). I basically ignored this and jumped right to the next step of reflashing to 4.0.4. (also confirmed root was working by opening my terminal emulator and running SU).
Overall, amazing! its 4AM here but I say it was worth the effort to do!
Thanks to everyone who did this! This is amazing!