So I have a basic server: i5, 4GB ram, Areca 1212 Raid card, 1x sata 40GB HDD (for OS) connected to motherboard sata, 4x 2TB HDDs all configured into RAID5 (for /home data) connected to Areca Raid card. OS is Linux Centos 6.4. I think this is all very good and common for a nice lil' server.
My problem is, if a HDD fails, no problem, I can hotswap onto another one. One device failure is permitted here. If the OS fails, a Live CD can become a recovery cd. But the risk bottleneck then becomes the Areca card, correct? If the Areca card fails, I need to buy a new Areca card. And I assume that the RAID configuration is stored onto the Areca Card, not on the HDDs (correct?). But I also assume that a new replacement Areca card can 'discover' the configuration, and recover the data. Is this all correct?
What if I am unable to purchase a new Areca card? I can, as a fallback, connect the 4x2TB HDDs directly onto the motherboard. Now, how do I tell/configure/mount/setup CentOS 6.4 that the 4x 2TB HDDs were Areca 1212 -type RAID5, and recover my data without using any Areca card? (Admittedly, if this is possible, it would be a lot slower than if the 4x 2TB HDDs were using the hardware raid of Areca 1212)