Best Linux version for a roon core connected to dac

Hi I am building a music pc based on roon core.
I am connecting the pc directly to my dac.

Will try this first Linux setup, what is the best? - #12 by Babak_Saber

What’s Linux distributions plays nice with the roon server software?

I have two M.2 drives for OS and music.

Try ROCK first to see if it works.

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I was unable to create a boot-able ROCK images. I have used Rufus and Etcher.
But I was able to create a Ubuntu Server 18.04.5 image and boot from that.

But I would prefer ROCK

The only thing I can think of is ROCK can’t boot in UEFI mode, only legacy mode. Etcher has always worked for me.

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Not sure about the best, but I’m running on Ubuntu 20.04LTS and have had very few issues. Hardware is a fairly beefy gaming PC that I was no longer using for gaming, so having plenty of RAM, a zippy SSD drive and good CPU probably helps too.

The nice thing about running on a linux distro is that I have a bit more control over things like backups via cron, scheduled restarts etc. For example, I backup roon daily at 4am via cron and push the backups out to google drive as well as keeping locally and rotating. I also then restart the core after the backup, just as a way to keep things running smoothly; I’ve only had a few occasions where a restart was required, and my instinct told me that this was in some way connected with the long-running server process. I’ve had no issues since scheduling regular restarts.

I’ve also been able to add some nice features around automations I’ve been using, such as extending the roon service to send out MQTT messages when the server starts/stops/restarts.

Happy to provide any more info if needed.

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As well as the ability to run memory and drive diagnostics, monitor thermals, etc, etc.



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Do you use it?

I would like some help on how to partition my disks.

I have a 512 and a 1024gb disks M.2
The server is only for music using roon.

I was thinking 256 for the server and the rest for storing music

I’ve tried Windows + Roon Core, ROCK before.

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I tried a bunch of these distro’s and prefer ubuntu studio, because it has so many things by default onboard, you only have to install curl and cifs-utils and then roon is installable. 10 minutes work.

I use an Ubuntu 20.04 container running inside the Proxmox hypervisor - i.e. as a virtual machine. Works great and has the advantage of being super easy to restore/rollback if anything goes haywire. That said has been super stable.

To be honest, I didn’t pay any special attention to partitioning.

However, my server install sits at around 2GB so I’d imagine what you are proposing is more than enough!

I use Audiolinux and it is amazing. You can load the root to the ram (it takes time when you start the machine) and a lot of tuning parameters. I use it for Roon endpoint as I have a six core Xeon processor in my basement for the Roon core. But it can be used as a Roon core as well. It is $60 for first copy and $30 for each more copies. For this money other than software you get a first class support on it for one year. I was using ubuntu before that. This one is way better and sounds less muddy without any adapter. It has many other futures to install other than Roon. I did not use Rock since I wanted Airplay and potentially HQPlayer.

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Hi Martin,

I think you want to make a “headless” setup?
because Roon core has not a GUI, so you can modify, adjust your setup only from your laplet or phone.

In that case I should go for the Ubuntu Server, Check which version Roon recommends, don’t forget to config your server for application optimalisation, because standard Ubuntu server is not set for this, also do minimal install and check other websites for Audiophile Linux optimalisation, because you disable a lot of unnecessary services.

If you want a GUI, just take the Ubuntu destop OS and install Roon on it, this works best op laptops, just plug your USB DAC into it, and off you go.
Both scenarios work with multi room endpoints, and Ropieee DAC’s, personally I don’t hear so much difference between serverless (Roon Core) or complete Roon version, what I do hear is the difference if your music collection is on internal SSD/HD’s or external HD like NAS.
Local storage is much faster, sounds in my opinion better.

Good Luck!


I think you mean RoonServer. There is not a graphical interface client or server for Linux (aka Roon).


I mean the complete ROON package, it comes with Core, Apps, and Audio Device, if installed on computer or laptop, you can browse your music collection, right?

Roon, like you are describing, does not exist for Linux OS. The only software for Linux OS is RoonServer and RoonBridge. Both do not have GUIs.

Your right, totally forgot that :grin:, thanks for the correction

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Hi my Ubuntu server is up and running. Would like too know if you can recommend some setting that can optimize the sound or point at some unnecessary services.