Can I run Nucleus from attached laptop running Roon core

Ready to purchase Nucleus but unsure how to use it in my current system configuration without attaching to home network. Currently I have Roon loaded on a new i7 Windows 10 laptop, with USB drive containing music library attached to my laptop, and the laptop attached to my Bryston BD3 dac via USB cable. I want to purchase a Nucleus + but prefer to not connect it to my network (I have both wifi and wired CAT 6 throughout house but prefer to just use local stereo system with local Nucleus for now). Instead, I just want to connect the Nucleus direct to my dac and control my Nucleus with the laptop already loaded with Roon core subscription……if possible. The laptop is connected to my home network via wifi and I use the laptop’s touch screen to operate Roon. Question: is this a feasible Nucleus configuration and, if so, how best to connect my laptop running Roon to my Nucleus, along with USB drive containing my music library. Thanks.

A RoonCore server connects to an endpoint (which is what you are describing how you want to use the Nucleus+ ) via a network connection, preferably wired. Roon requires that the various parts, ServerCore, Network Endpoint and Control Points be an a network to be able to communicate with each other. Currently, you are using 1 machine for all three parts, ie. your laptop is acting as the core and the endpoint and the control point.

Before, purchasing anything hardware wise, I would suggest reviewing Roon architecture in the FAQ:

If you are confused, feel free to send me a PM and I’ll answer your questions in detail.

@BradleyBGordon Bradley,

Tagging @support for you since you will definitely want their insight

You wrote …

My thoughts …

You say you don’t want to connect the Nucleus+ to your network. It needs to be connected to the Internet to get updates from Roon and to stream Tidal content if you are a Tidal user. How will it get this access if not connected to your network?

You say you want to control it from a laptop on your network. This is only possible if you Nucleus+ and laptop are on the same network.

Presumably you could setup a new network with Internet access for your Nucleus+ and laptop but that seems to be a lot of work. Maybe you have a really good reason for keeping the Nucleus+ off your network.

My home network has 35 active devices connected to an Orbi Router and Orbi Satellite and streams just fine from my Windows 10 computer running my Roon core which is connected via Ethernet to my Orbi Router upstairs to endpoints connected wirelessly to my Orbi Satellite downstairs which is wirelessly connected to my Orbi Router.


Hello @BradleyBGordon,

Unfortunately, you will need to connect your Nucleus to the network for it to operate properly. Account authentication and most of our metadata services rely on network access from the Core so it is simply not possible to separate the Nucleus from an active internet connection and have it working properly.

If you really want to, you can set up a different subnet for the Nucleus by buying another Router and then isolating it from the rest of the network but if you ever try to connect using Roon Remote devices from the primary subnet, it will be unable to locate the Nucleus.


Noris -

First, thanks for your timely response.

I do want to add one more piece of info that might/might not allow a Roon Nucleus to operate with my laptop without direct internet via ethernet connection to the Nucleus.

My Dell laptop also has an ethernet RJ45 input port (can it also be an output?). Can my laptop’s wifi be on and connected to internet along with a CAT cable connecting my laptop to the Nuclueus ethernet port to make the Nucleus internet connected via my laptop?

Thanks in advance for your assistance.

In all these answers to you the basic question, for you, has not been asked.

Why would you want to use Nucleus for anything other than running core. The reason to buy a Nucleus is to run core. If you intend to keep core on your laptop, then you don’t need a Nucleus.

To use Nucleus for anything but running core is overkill.

Hello @BradleyBGordon,

You could set up an Ethernet Bridge but I would not recommend this.

I think @xxx question is valid here – why would you keep your Core on the PC if you have the Nucleus at your disposal? And why are you not able to connect the Nucleus directly to the Router or a Switch?

I would suggest that you use the Nucleus as the Core and then use your Laptop as a Roon Remote, this will give you the ability to have any devices connected to the laptop show up as endpoints and would be a much better setup in my opinion.


Thanks Slim but I think you are missing a key point of my inquiry. The idea is to run the Nucleus locally, for a dedicated system, without having to run an ethernet cable from a remote switch, rooms away. (wouldn’t we all prefer to not pull wire?). I was asking/wondering if the laptop now running core into my dac could use its wireless/wifi internet connection to give the Nuc access to internet without having to run a long ethernet cable directly to the Nuc (my modem+switch is located many rooms away from main stereo system). The laptop would provide this local internet connection…if it worked. But Noris says not. Why the Nucleus? Much cleaner/lower noise connection to my dac versus current laptop connection to dac (per Roon). Everyone keeps trying to tell my why not use ethernet to the Nuc which is a valid question, but my inquiry was first to ask whether I can use my laptop’s wifi connection instead. If answer is no, so be it. That was just a question, not a rationale. Thanks anyway for your input. BG

Thanks Noris. See my reply to Slim. Simple answer re. why not connect nucleus directly to router or switch is need to have an ethernet cable run to location of my main system, which is rooms away from where my modem+switch are located. Nobody mentions need to pull wire, unless I’m still missing something more obvious. The laptops wireless/wifi connection was meant to replace need to run CAT wire to my main system. Just a question to see if I first had a simpler, lower cost solution via laptop versus pulling wire. I do appreciate your genuine efforts to answer my question.

You could use a power line adapter to extend the Ethernet to where the Nucleus is. Not the greatest thing in the world but they do work.

Great creative thinking! Might have more line noise to deal with, but a novel solution nobody else has yet tee’d up. Just the sort of options I want to weigh before purchase. Thanks ged.

If you buy a good one rather than the cheapest one they can be pretty handy. You don’t need gigabits of throughput if you are just doing a single high res stream, I believe 30 mB is all you need. If you’re worried about noise on the mains stick filters on the other sockets.
Word of warning they can be a pain in the a*se too especially if you have dodgy or old wiring…

That’s what I have done.

Noris, one suggestion is a power line ethernet connection from my modem/router/switch room to where my main system and Nuc would be operating. What feedback have you received from customers using this solution (wire/power line ethernet) in lieu of running coax wire through house? Thanks for any feedback. BG

If you search the forums you can see a mixed bag of responses about powerlines. But that is true of the technology as a whole rather than a roon unique case. Sometimes they work a treat sometimes they don’t - suck it and see - buy from somewhere with a returns policy…

I used powerline wireless and ethernet as a solution when renting home in UK since my office was in lower floor, below where internet service came into house. Worked just fine but that was for PC and printing, not audio. BTW, I don’t stream (tidal et al), just play my library from local USB drive so the ethernet connection over power line would only be used for Roon control, updates, metadata etc., not actual music file transmission as that will be USB’d directly into the Nucleus from library drive.

Ah OK. I have used them for everything at one point as the BT socket is in the most awkward place in the house. When they worked they were great, high bandwidth and no discernible “noise” to me. But, my house wiring was done by bozo the clown so did suffer from having to reset them ever so often.
Now i’m on a mesh wireless system and life is good. £150 for a BT whole house system.

We’ve traced a lot of issues to powerline ethernet. It may work, but it may not, and it can be a pain to debug when you’re dealing with the latter.

As Noris mentioned, Nucleus requires internet access in order to run a Roon Core, and running a Core is what Nucleus is designed to do.

If you don’t want to run ethernet to the location of the system, my recommendation would be to install a mesh network like Eero and others. Then you can put an access point near your system connected to Nucleus, and your laptop can just run as a Remote.

This saves you the headache of dealing with multiple networks, bridges, powerline adapters, etc, all of which you can avoid with a decent mesh setup.

Hope that helps!

Got it. Thanks Roon support.