Easy music backup from ROCK

I recently upgraded my core from an old MacBook Pro to a NUC/ROCK. The MBP kept crashing, which was a problem because it was a PITA to physically access (hidden inside my home theater cabinet, as is the new ROCK). A big part of my motivation for the upgrade was to get as close as possible to a fire-and-forget appliance for music.

I was planning to put my music library on an internal SSD – one less thing to go wrong relative to a NAS, and the fastest possible response time.

When I used the MBP as my core, I painlessly backed up my music with Time Machine. I was frankly shocked to learn (after shelling out for a fanless NUC) that ROCK makes it easy to backup my database, but has zero functionality for backing up my music.

I know there are ways to do it, but they require non-trivial levels of networking and computer skills, 3rd-party apps, etc.

Most other things about Roon are well thought out. ROCK is close to my goal of an “it just works” appliance. For me, the main thing required to get it there is the ability to attach a USB drive (or point to a network resource) and click a button within Roon that says “backup now” or “schedule a backup,” just as I can with the database.

(Note: I’m not talking about cloud backup. I’m guessing lots of folks like me have old spinning drives sitting around that would provide adequate peace of mind without the ongoing cost of multi-TB cloud accounts.)

Thanks for listening, and apologies if this request duplicates an older one.

I use an app on my iPad called FE File Explorer Pro. It allows two methods. Peer to peer and USB to host movement with ease. It sees ROCK and my NAS with ease and is fast.

I probably do this in the reverse order to most people and the hard way in some people’s opinion. It is also not a one button solution like you want but…

I Rip CDs, download tracks, etc. to my Main computer as a waypoint. I use a temporary “working Directory” to do all file manipulations (tag adjustments, name corrections, etc). I then copy paste those freshly made files to the devices and storage locations I want them on, i.e. the main computer music location, the NAS storage, ROCK/NUC, DAP, Laptops, etc. This gives me multiple location that have the entire set of music files as “back-ups”.
I use the NAS as the “master” database for all music, so in other words if one of the devices dies (that is not the NAS obviously) I use the NAS to reload that device once it has been recovered from whatever issue it had. If the NAS goes down I have these other location to choose from for restoring it.

So basically, I do not back from any of my devices (for music that is), other than the built in DB back-up in Roon. It just means that whenever I get new music I need to, at the minimum, put the files on the NAS and then update the devices as needed (I don’t use some of them regularly so they may be out of sync a bit).

And yes, I know you could automate this for the most part by buying a backup/syncing program. But everyone of those that I have used utterly failed to be useful for me and they also do not work for all my devices. This manual method gives me better piece of mind. YMMV and IMO and all that.

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I have a separate 10 TB drive that is usually powered down and disconnected; intended as backup. Any I have a Synology NAS on which is my music.

I’ve copied all the NAS files to my backup drive. When I download music I copy it to the “to back up” directory on the the NAS. Once in a while I’ll connect the backup drive to the NAS through USB, copy the files over from the “to back up” directory and power down.

Why power down? It also adds malware protection on top of data loss due to drive failure

I appreciate the input from the folks who have responded. And I will see if I can adapt your suggestions to my situation.

But I think the diversity of approaches kind of supports my point: Roon has (literally) left us all to our own devices – and there are a multitude of devices.

Wouldn’t people like to have the option of simple music file backup from within Roon?

I think that part of the problem would be the variety of storage locations, network setups, and streaming services that people use. It would requires a program in and of itself to be able to have it access the local storage (within the core machine PC/Mac/Nucleus/Rock etc.) and remote storage location (NAS, cloud, VPN, external drives, etc. etc.) and it would not be able to back-up any of strictly the streamed music. Not everyone would understand that I think and they would get upset when they find that their “library back-up” is not what they thought it would/should be.

In other words, it’s not a simple thing and would require an entire development team to design and implement and then support. Which Roon Labs just does not have.

And to answer your question, no, I don’t want it, I just want a music player and music discovery. The zones and grouping zones are nice, also. I would rather have Roon Labs keep developing the product as a music server and not get sidetracked on trying to make it a back-up solution also.

Yes I think Roon has correctly decided that the backup of a music library should be treated differently from back up of the Roon database.

The backup of the music library should depend on the user and his technical needs to be honest.