06-20-2012 09:16 AM
I would really like to do RAID 1 with a T430 ...
RAID 1 isn't about speed, although it can increase read speeds. It does reduce write speeds. Its about having a live redundant copy of everything in case one drive fails. While a RAID of SSDs would be very nice, it could also be cost prohibitive.
The thing about having a redundant copy on an identical drive is that if one drive has a mechanical failure you can expect the other drive to fail around the same time since the hardware is identical and has the same duty cycle. The redundancy concept behind RAID is nice but I wouldn't rely on it. A quality SSD should not fail on you the way a HDD can, when they die it's usually because they've ran out of write cycles which can take upwards of 10 years. When this happens you can still retrieve your data from them, you just can no longer store any new data
One other thing to keep in mind when considering a software RAID solution is that it will tax your system resources since there is no dedicated RAID controller and they are prone to data corruption. I've even seen this happen when a RAID controller fails and it is replaced with the same model that is a different hardware revision. And RAID is not a backup solution.
I agree RAID does not equal a backup. However, it does have advantages in terms of redundancy. My home server is currently running in a software RAID 1 configuration. At least with Linux, the overhead of software RAID 1 is less than 5%, so a separate controller is not really worth it. Additionally, one of the benefits to software RAID (again on Linux) is that it is not tied to a controller so you don't need an identical machine to recover or rebuild the data.
Yes, if you put 2 drives in a system the a drive will fail twice as much, and RAID is not a back up. Always back up the RAIDed system. I've read so many problems of people with "quality SSDs" that I don't trust SSDs as much anymore. Sure SSDs are great if you do things like drop your computer, but they tend to have internal failures or issues and just stop working. I still use them as the main drive in my system, but I back up as well.