Help upgrading to Roon 2.0 and Arc

Roon Core Machine

2022 Mac mini M1
OS Monterey

Networking Gear & Setup Details

Wired Cat5

Connected Audio Devices

Cambridge Audio CNX v2

Number of Tracks in Library

Description of Issue

Help! I’ve been successfully running Roon 1.8 on my Mac Mini. After some reading, I decided it looked like I should download RoonServer 2.0 since I’m running the Mac mini as a headless server, I think. (ie. I’m only connecting to it remotely from another machine). I installed it, but now I really don’t know what else to do. Having downloaded Arc onto my ipad, it’s saying no Roon Cores found.

What do I do?

Can you connect to your core with Roon Remote?

I run an older Mac mini headless and I’ve had issues updating. If I connect to the mini via Screen Sharing using another Mac and run Roon remote, I can request the update, but Roon server never seems to restart on its own. I need to connect via screen sharing and manually re-start Roon Server. Once that’s done, the core should be available.

There are 3 configurations you need to understand (don’t blame me, it is Roonlabs way of product design):

  • Roon core 2.0 calls for Roon remote 2.0 App - for listening in your home - (you find it in the respective App stores of your UE);
  • To use Roon ARC (for listening from abroad), you need to have Roon core 2.0 installed and Roon ARC app on your UE (a side of Roon remote App). Make sure, you follow the various procedures to get ARC connectivity from outside of your home network up and running. Just check the support forum. Happy reading, in case you have troubles;-);
  • if you want to stay at v1.8, Roonlabs made Roon legacy. You need both installed on your core and UE.

I always recommend: before and after installing a version: reboot your core.

Hope this helps!

PS: just to write those lines, makes my brain going cracy. But, I’m just a stupid engineer;-)

Thank you Stefan, and also for making me feel like it’s not just me who finds RoonLabs’ explanations and instructions less than clear.

After my difficulties, I deleted RoonServer, installed Roon Core 2 on the Mac Mini and was able to get Roon Remote and ARC functioning (after a couple of false starts).

Before I consider trying to install RoonServer again, is it really necessary? What are the benefits?

Assuming it is, my key question is: How do I get RoonServer to launch and start operating? Will Roon Remote “see” it, even if I haven’t launched it? If I double click RoonServer nothing appears to happen. Maybe something is happening, but there is no visual feedback. Maybe that’s because it’s a headless server, I don’t know.

Additional help much appreciated!

I think you’ll find (most of) your answers here.

@Chris_Roon, I’m sorry but I started at that page before posting here. I understand the explanation of why using Roon Server might be better for a headless core, but this is the only sentence that details how to actually launch Roon Server:

macOS has a similar option available to launch Roon Server at login.

This does nothing to help me figure out how to do it.

Nor is there any explanation of whether it’s really worth doing if I have a dedicated machine as my Roon Core and hence computing power isn’t really an issue.


You launch Server as you would any other app.
After you launch there should be an icon in your menu bar.
You can set to launch on startup from here.

The advantages to running Server is a lighter install and less use of system resources.
For me this enabled use of more DSP functions on a lowish spec machine.

Server will also restart itself if it hangs etc.

If you’re happy with the performance of the full install on your machine there’s no real reason to switch to server afaik

macOS has a similar option available to launch Roon Server at login.

You’re right, that line is hardly a comprehensive explanation. :wink: And I can’t help you with that one since I don’t own a Mac. Maybe this thread helps:

I can’t think of any reason if you already have your Core running and it’s working for you… outside the reasons given in the Roon Labs Help Center. Roon Core is an application with a User Interface, but it has Roon Server built-in. So in terms of functionality, you won’t loose anything.

If you wish to have a Roon server which is dedicated to that task only, always-on, and always-headless, then I’d go for the the Roon Server option. It will eat less resources throughout the day compared to a ‘normal’ Roon Core if you’d leave that one turned on 24/7. Of course, this option won’t do if you’re going to use your MAC for other tasks as well which need a screen and a keyboard.

@Misha_Weidman - As I mentioned in an earlier post, I’m running an older Mac mini headless. I run both Roon Server and Roon Remote on it. Roon Server is running 24/7. You can have it start on log in either via the menu bar item as noted in the post @Placebophile above or you can open System Preferences (I think System Settings on the new mac OS)>Users & Groups and under your user select the Login Items tab and add Roon Server there. I’ve only use the Room Remote application as a way to see what the configuration of the core was when I was having trouble getting ARC set up and I was away from home network. I used a Mac VNC client called Screens to access that mini.

I use Roon server for exactly the reasons stated previously - my Core is older (2014) and I do a little DSP when I’m listening with headphones, so not running the full Roon application conserves some resources.

I would agree that if you have enough computing power, which you do, it’s not an issue. For me, it’s finding a balance between tinkering (which can be part of the fun) and being able to listen to my music, which is the priority. If it’s not broken, probably nothing worth fixing.

Although I’m not an expert boy any means, I’ve been Apple computers for around 30 years and Roon since 2015, so if you still have questions, ask away! Good luck!

Thank you everyone, and especially @Placebophile. After seeing the screenshot, I reinstalled RoonServer and found a tiny Roon icon (via screenshare) at the top right hand corner of the screen that included the options “Launch at startup” and “Quit.”

Given that this a new Mac mini dedicated to serving as my Roon core, and it’s working fine as such, I’ll keep the full Roon 2.0 install.

Thanks gain to everyone!


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