A quick note and a link I don't want to lose to a very useful article on Linux software RAID management:
mdadm: A New Tool For Linux Software RAID Management
I'll use this post as a placeholder for other relevant links.
Software RAID seems to be progressing nicely since my first attempts with it several years ago. It's generally a no-brainer to work with these days, but it was a much more intensive learning curve back then...