How much more stable is ROCK (RoonOS+Core) than the other operating systems running the Roon Core?

I’ve been somewhat forgiving of the instability of Roon when it was just me using it and regular restarts were merely a hassle.

But since switching our home system fully over from Apple Music and Airplay my wife is now using Roon and she is far less accepting of crashes, freezes, dropouts and other gremlins.

I currently use a Mac M1 Mini (8Gb) with Monterey which, by all reports, is especially problematic due to rampant memory leaks.

So in the interests of marital harmony I’ve doing a stability shootout.

Switching to Server on the Mini is (so far) notably less memory intensive in the sense that memory usage is increasing slowly rather than quickly, and from a lower base.

Thinking Apple Silicon might be the issue I also bought an 8th Gen i7 MiniPC with 16GB.

Initially it had Windows 11 installed and crashed basically every time I looked at it.

So I rolled it back to Windows 10 and, apart from one torture-test induced crash it has been rock solid.

The problem, of course, will be Window’s bizarre inability to completely turn off updates and subsequent restarts/instability.

So I’m wondering if I should go all the way to ROCK.

On a scale of 1 to 10: if Core and Windows 11 is a 1; and Core and Mac Monterey is a 4; and Core and Win 10 is an 8; is ROCK a 10?

Or a 9?

If it is just a bit more stable than Win 10, then I might as well stick with Win 10 as it has the advantage of being able to use the machine for other stuff and I could flip my Mac Mini.

I’ll probably give it a bash anyway as I have a spare SSD and so can fairly easily swap out Win 10 for ROCK and go back if needed.

But I’m curious what others have experienced.

10   

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Careful putting your music drives into Rock, it’ll erase them and expect you to copy tunes to them, so it’s not just a quick trial getting there.

I’ve been running ROCK for over two years, 24x7x365, and it’s never let me down.

I’m running on a NUC8I3BEH with 3,700 albums, multi-room, and some DSP. The NUC is in a cupboard with my router and switches.

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I chose ROCK over WIN 10 to avoid the never ending updates that WIN 10 is subject to. It is connected to a small UPS along with a NAS, in the garage. I think the UPS is crucial to avoid corrupt DB issues whatever you run Roon on. We have had several mains supply blips in the last year but ROCK never noticed. Current uptime is 255 days (not unusual for ROCKs on 365/24/7) and that is only because I had to move it elsewhere in the garage.

I can’t actually answer your question other to say that ROCK on a NUC is as stable as it gets IMHO judging by the Support threads on this Community.

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I went with a NUC8I7BEH/Rock during the trail period in 2019. This combination has been reliable for 3 years. Used daily, always on and always available.

Highest base processor frequency is more important with Roon then the total number of cores/threads. 2.8 base frequency in this case gets the job done. Good quality internal component choices (m.2 drive, Sata drive and Ram) certainly helps with reliability.

Can’t help but rate it a 10.

My ROCK has run for just under 18 months with the only reboots when moving it to a new location (twice) and the only Roon server restarts when upgrading to a new release during that time. It’s flawless for me. 10!

I have a NUC10I7FNH.

This!

I swear by UPS.
But…lol.
As is par for the course my old UPS died and I thought, yes I will get round to getting another one soon.
Well not soon enough, we had a massive power spike which took out the HDD of my win10 main PC.

Lesson learned…make soon, sooner!

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There’s this from another thread -

Based on your use case I would go for ROCK. It was designed and is dedicated to only to run a Roon Core and therefore is small and doesn’t contain unnecessary stuff. Windows is overkill IMHO. And ROCK Is simple to maintain with the web interface.
And as you can read above it runs rock solid. :grin:

What I like about ROCK is it’s entirely dedicated. I tried using Windows 10 / Roon Server with a browser in full screen mode to view the Display. And that’s OK… up until Windows 10 decided it had something extremely important to tell me about OneDrive :man_shrugging:

If you really don’t need your NUC for any other functionality then ROCK is the way to go. No alerts, no news, no updates until you want to do it. When other members of the family are using this stuff, people who might not be as computer literate, it’s best to keep to devices that you can dedicate to the task at hand.

Unless you’re using the machine for anything, I see no reason to install WinOS. A ROCK install would be the way to go (in my eyes).

I purchased a *Dell Optiplex 3050 i5 6500, 8GB for £49.99. I’ve chucked a 128GB M.2 and another 8GB ram that I had laying around. Can’t complain at the price and it’s whisper quiet. It’s not for everyone, but I don’t see the point in spending money on the NUC’s. I’ve been using an *Optiplex 7010, but wanted a Quadcore for a little more room.

*Please be aware, that these are not supported and you’re on your own should anything go a miss.

As I’m quite happy to tinker around, I find something like this the best of both worlds.

I went from Synology DS1520+ to Lenovo ThinkCentre M90n to Intel NUC 10i7FNHN1 with ROCK and on my book ROCK is 14. If you care about your marriage, get an Intel NUC, install Roon ROCK and live happy :wink:

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I agree with above , I migrated from an all purpose Windows 10 Desktop to a 10i7 NUC / 32GB with a 4Tb SSD internal about 6 months ago . Even with all the trials and tribulations of shut downs and start ups ROCK has been stable.

The caveat is that in South Africa we are prone to power outages which happen on some occasions 2-3 times a day !!. This means the NUC / ROCK is shut down and restarted (at least) daily. In summer we have dramatic electrical storms so ditto the whole system is shut down and restarted.

I have had a trouble free experience. Whether the restarts hinder or help who knows ?

As an aside shutting down the NUC/ROCK is a simple button press compared with a mouse/screen “proper” shut down of Windows. So a headless installation is fine.

I would NOT be without a UPS so that I get the time to do shut downs properly and orderly !! (@AceRimmer)

One of the things that make ROCK solid is it is used solely for a music server and nothing else.
I use Windows 10 Pro stripped down of as much crap as possible and use it strictly as a music server. It is solid.

This is next to impossible to turn off if you are running the Home Edition. With Pro you can disable auto updates, upgrades and manually update at your convenience.

MD…

Save time and just install it and enjoy.

However, if your crashes are because of some hardware issue then ROCK will crash but lack of diagnostic tools may make it more difficult to identify its a hardware fault.

On the other hand, if its just Windows being Windows then getting ride of Windows will give you instant stability.

Roon does not “just crash”. Many people run it for months and months without issue. No one should live with it crashing. Take time to fix it. ROCK running on supported hardware eliminates a lot of the variables that could be the underlying issue to frequent crashes. Good luck.

Thanks for all the advice and tips.

Alas, my 8/10 estimation for Core via Windows 10 seems to be a tad optimistic.

In the past week I’ve had one episode where Roon’s memory usage hit 14gb after changing a metadata setting, necessitating a force quit and restart.

And even though I have no active zones playing, for some reason Roon has doubled its memory grab over the past 12 hours. With 16GB I still have a lot of room for Roon, but it doesn’t fill me with confidence.

And it isn’t just the Core. Roon Remote on my M1 Macbook Air is currently chewing up 2.5GB!

Nevertheless, I’m going to keep trying. I’ve bought a NUC7 and will try ROCK.

But I’m flabbergasted by the contortions required to run this software and gobsmacked that Roon can’t seem to fix it.

Just ridiculously poor software engineering.

The only way to run Roon. Welcome to the club.

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Hmmm. I’d been running Roon core on my 2019 MacBook Pro (Intel) and it had been working great for the last couple of years, no problems. I haven’t run the remote on a Mac much, so can’t say.

Note however that the Mac was dedicated to the Roon core. Nothing else running on it.

I did move to an i7 ROCK last week, but that was for other reasons, not Roon-related. Mostly smooth move, except that I wasn’t able to recover the database from the backup on the Mac core.