Memory leak as a cause of Roon slowness and dropouts

I am not particularly tech savvy but over the years have had times when Roon has worked fabulously well for weeks on end, only to be followed by days of slowness and drop outs. I attributed this totally to the fact that I was using wifi. I spent ages trying to sort out any possible wifi interference. I had noticed that the problem had got worse since the introduction of Roon 2.0.

I finally decided to bite the bullet and invest in installing an ethernet network in my house. However, as a prelude to doing this, I remembered that I had a very long ethernet cord that would allow me to attach my main Roon endpoint directly to my router. The next few days I had no dropouts at all and even on those endpoints that remained connected by wifi. I thought: problem solved.

Then I had a lot of new music that I wanted to upload (about 50 albums). This went smoothly all the albums were recognised in Roon. Then the dreaded drops out started - even after a few seconds of playing and on the device that I had set up with a direct ethernet connection. I did all the usual rebooting but the problem was not solved.

I thought then that it must be something to do with my computer on which my Roon Server is located. Looking at the task manager the memory was over ninety percent. I rebooted and monitored the memory and it climbed back over ninety percent. Reading some of the posts on memory leak issues on this site, I realised that it may have had something to do with the new files I had loaded. I deleted them all and then added them again in batches to see if the memory blew out again. It did not, and memory is now hovering around 74%, which on doing a Google search found out that this was OK.

Everything is working wonderfully again. However, I also noticed in some of the posts on this site that memory leaks could be caused by having “unidentified” albums. I have 248 of these out of a total of 6583 albums (5339 local, 1244 Qobuz).

The issue for me is how can I avoid this problem in the future. Should I only load a small number of new albums at any one time? Do I need to do anything about the unidentified albums?

Surely this issue is one for Roon to address in a future update.

You don’t say what your Roon server hardware is (which OS, which CPU, how much RAM), but on reasonable hardware i very much doubt that 248 unidentified albums should be a problem. (The discussions about unidentified album problems typically are cases with thousands and more).

I don’t know if adding 50 albums at once caused excessive memory usage. It’s possible.

(But it does not necessarily have to be an actual memory leak. An actual “leak” means that memory gets used up continually and is never freed again (or used up too quickly and excessively in any case). In your case it may just have used a lot temporarily and more than your computer had available (I don’t know how much you have), in which case more RAM might have helped. The difference may seem immaterial, but with an actual leak adding more RAM is not a permanent solution because more and more is leaked).

As for the question of adding smaller batches, personally I am of the opinion that adding very large numbers at once to anything is never a very good idea because if anything goes wrong it becomes more or less impossible to find out what caused it. Not just performance, but also credits, etc. I always added mine one by one in the beginning when building my library and later increased the batch size a bit (e.g., one artist at once), enabling me to check after each addition that everything was still OK. It takes longer, but if anything had happened I would have known right away.

One might argue that it should be possible to add much more at once and it should work, and maybe so. But any software may have bugs and I always do it this way with anything. I also didn’t add tens of thousands of photos to a photo manager at once, for instance. Maybe overly cautious, but it always served me well.

My computer is an i5 runs Win 10 with 8 Gb of RAM and a 500Gb SSD. I use it as a dedicated Roon server with my local music stored on a HDD connected by USB to the Roon server. The Roon server is connected by cable to the router. My endpoints were all wifi up until the ethernet connection as noted in my post.

I always amend the metadata before I load to Roon, then do a check on Roon that everything is OK and that the album is identified. I had already done this for these new albums, but it seemed that Roon was wanting to do something more or extra after I had done all of this.
I deleted and reloaded the albums expecting to find some corrupt file, which was not the case.

These issues typically have occurred and resolved over a few days in the past and as I noted there have been more of them since Roon 2.0. I do not know whether the earlier incidents are connected with loading new albums or not.

OK. Maybe something did go wrong this time and it used too much memory. 8 GB should be kind of fine (although I generally consider it tight for anything with Windows). In this particular case it’s possible that you would not have noticed anything with 16 GB, or maybe it would still have been a problem during this particular import. Impossible to say, really, with one datapoint.

Thank you for your comments. I now know that I need to keep an eye on memory if I experience the same problem again and not just focus on home network issues.

I am planning to go ahead with the Ethernet installation. Obviously the next step will be a new computer with 16 GB RAM.

I have noticed the whole process of identification when adding new albums does seem to impact performance way more than it did. Whether this is down to another cloud issue is hard to tells but when adding new albums I can no longer continue to use Roon UI as it’s so sluggish. Analysis is set to background as well. It returns to normal as soon as they are identified and analysis continues in background. I posted a ticket about this as it first started when the last but one build came out that broke so much. It had been better but is getting slower again. Nothing else has changed in my setup and I have an 7i7 16gb ram. Had not one response.

A further update on this issue for my set up:

I removed all the unidentified albums from my Roon library and rebooted and everything went well for the next few days,

I added a dozen new albums to my library. All were identified by Roon. Memory usage went up (as would be expected) while I was doing this. However, twelve hours later , with Roon not being used, memory was hovering around 90% and above in total (Roon had gone from using around 3,000 Mb of memory to around 5,000 Mb of memory). Roon was also consuming a lot of CPU. Rebooted the computer, memory is now running around 73% with Roon using around 3,000 Mb. It is obvious that Roon gets into some sort of loop with new albums