File type folder structure in your libraries - useful or OCD?

As many of us, I also have a folder structure. I concluded that with library of more than 500+ albums, this probably comes as a necessity, especially outside of Roon world, say when you want to copy some music to USB stick to listen in a car, or even more important for Portable Musical players. It does help. The file structure, certainly comes with all dilemmas of choice as desribed above. Whenever you have an album or author falling in more than one (whatever is your structure) category, you have to make a choice where would that finally be placed for ease of finding it in a future.

With time my library shrinked from about 5000+ to about 2000+ albums, but I came to the following core stucture:

  |--  [#TECHNICAL]
  |--  [CLASSICAL]
  |--  [HIP-HOP][RAP][R&B]
  |--  [JAZZ][SOUL][FUNK][R&B]
  |--  [ROCK][POP]

Inside these folders the music is arranged by

Author \ Original Album Year [TECH DATA] - Album title [#Release Year][COUNTRY][CATALOGUE NUMBER]

#Roon Tip 1.
It is important to mention that Roon has a nice algorithms to digest the album titles and takes data in “()” or “[]” brackets as additional information that you can find later in “verision” of the album. For the [TECH DATA] I put the details like [CD], [SACD], [LP], [Reel] etc… and the rest is probably self explanatory. Like in this example, I can clearly see Japanese release of 2002 and US MFSL release of 2014 in versions for Miles Davies’ Bitches Brew. I have quite a few “duplicates” like this in the collection for they sound different to each other!

#Roon Tip 2.
In my case I’m running Roon Server (not Rock) on Ubuntu. I can show how “my” folder structure actually matters and comes to use inside Roon application!

First in “Settings >> Storage” I map my “core” folders one by one, like this…

Why would anyone do this!? Well, because you can select your folders in Roon player ! When you go to “Albums” and click the “Focus”, here you may find this extremely helpful selection option !

Sometimes I simply can not find an album via the standard Roon search proposals or browser. Either I type the titles or authors wrong, or genre interpretation do not correspond to what I’m used to, smal things like that…

Here’s a “use case”. For example, you can see I have [MINIMALISM] as a separate folder in my library. Yes, because I like this type of music of Steve Reich, Philip Glass and the likes… And that would normally be the subgenre of Classic music, or… Avantgarde? or… Experimental? or… Modern Classical? or… what if there are three different versions of Reich’s “Music for 18 Musicians” performed by different artists and they would fall into the different genres? Nothing is perfect. I simply go to [MINIMALISM] folder that I have made to my self, 'cause I know exactly what I will find there!

Hope this opinion helps!

PS: For those who noticed in the screenshot [AudioPhil] spelling - it is a nick name ! :slight_smile:


A very well thought out and explained post! I have basically come to the same conclusions and methods as yourself, but for one difference.
I don’t do genres! I have way to many artists crossing over between genres for that! :slight_smile:
So my root folders are pointers to the contents origin or purpose rather than genres. Except for Classical, which is a root folder!

I also use more than one storage location, to be able to use Focus on these. Unfortunately this is kinda complicated to achieve on a Roon Rock/Nucleus, since these default to the root folder of the InternalStorage. But it’s doable!


Exactly, OR, sometimes I myself will decide that an artist is really a different genre, :scream:

Until summer I had everything in one folder using the following:

Artist => Year - Album => CD1 => Track - Title

The main problem of course were the duplicates because I had many of them in various formats. I tried to solve that with help from here but it didn’t work. So I decided to move them into the following structure

Codec - Samplerate => Artist => Year - Album => Disc.Track - Title

Now everything was more clear to me. With the help of a dual pane file manager I kept the highest version open and I roamed to the other folders deleting the duplicates.

At a time I was trying to group my collection by %Codec%, but this caused another inconvenience as Authors would be split under different groups, and by no means after some time I would be able to remember what is where.

I also tried sorting out by letter, it is probably the “cleanest” way of grooming possible, but my memory was the limiting factor. At about 1000 authors in my collection I would not remember two thirds of who they are and what they play :slight_smile: Roon interface certainly takes this problem away !

As for the %Genres%, personally I clunched my teeth not to overengeneer, and made this as generic as possible in my universe of short memory. Only 7 main categories and no splitting to sub-genres + couple of separate folders for my convenience. Well, guess what!? This certainly is not ideal at all !

One of many examples in my library - Robert Fripp and David Sylvian. These are huge scale Artists for the sake of Art of Sound ! I can not imagine having one tag for their works for the sake of classification. Because the only classification for them is truly their names. And here is comes huge diversity in styles, their collaborations, etc… etc… Where would you copy them in the library split by gendre ? hehehe :slight_smile: I will not tell you where I have put them, but enought to say - I can find their works immediatelly in my collection, this is all that matters to me!

Blessed be the music for the sake of music and Roon software for us to be able to find our music ! hehehe