My experiences with Rock and a 500k+ tracks library


If there is a difference in the Roon setup you should optimally use for a 500K-1M track library vs a 1M+ library this would probably make sense. If not I’d keep them together.

I do have a question though. Is there any difference in the stress on Roon in a large library that is primarily local tracks (where the metadata and the music is stored locally) vs a large library that is primarily Qobuz or Tidal tracks added to your library (where the metadata is local and music is remote)?

I believe the answer is “there is no difference” in the stress on Roon for these two situations but I want to confirm my understanding.

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I’d like to add to Ralph’s request here. I think we need some clarity.

On a post from June '18 last year:

In that same post Brian thought it would take a year for Roon OS to catch up to Windows in it’s performance for these large libraries.

But then just a bit ago @danny said this:

Given this, I would really like clear answers on:

  • Is there a tipping point in library size where you should go to Windows machine? (Or not) If so, what is the size?

  • Is there any difference on this answer depending on the makeup of the library (local tracks vs added tracks from Qobuz or Tidal)

And it would be great to see this guidance updated as major new updates to Roon comes out. While there was a time where a 500+ library was rare when it was comprised solely of local tracks, with the ease of adding tracks from a streaming service, this is going to become a more common thing IMHO.

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I don’t know whether it is still the case, but at one time there was a limit of 10,000 albums that TIDAL would allow as favourites (i.e. added to the Roon library). I also don’t know whether Qobuz has a similar limit.

That aside, I agree that it would be good to get current clarity on library sizes and operating systems.

I think you may be confusing 2 things (but I’m not sure).

There is (still I think) a limit of 10,000 songs that you can download to your device from Tidal for offline listening.

I think that is different than songs you add to your library in Roon where just the meta data is stored locally but the songs are still remote so this has no bearing on offline listening. I don’t think there is a limit here but I’m not 100% sure. If there is a limit, I also don’t know if there is a difference between a track added to a playlist vs added as a favorite.

We mentioned this in the release notes for 1.7. Streaming vs files make no difference on performance at all. They impact the system identically.

There was a time where Roon OS performed the same as Roon on Linux/Mac, and you needed to use Windows if you had more than approximately 300,000 tracks. But that changed with 1.7 – Mac/Linux/Windows are the same as before, but Roon OS (ROCK and Nucleus) is even better performing than Windows now.


@danny Thank you for the clarification.

I am current running Roon core on an i7 Windows 10 computer and I rarely experience any hardware or software related issues with Roon managing my vast music library. If and when I do begin to have trouble I simply stop and then restart the Roon core and that fixes things. And of course with Windows’ monthly updates the computer ends up being rebooted at least once a month.

Nope, as I say, at one time there certainly was a limit of 10,000 albums that TIDAL would allow as favourites, and thus could be added to a Roon Library. Nothing to do with, and separate from, offline listening limits (whatever they may have been).

another advantage of Roon OS :slight_smile:

Remember, we developed this to reduce problems, run Roon better in all ways, and to take the “computer” (and all associated headaches) out of music&audio. Nucleus is the turn-key version, but ROCK is free.

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At present the Windows 10 Roon core computer also runs Plex for when I’m watching movies and not listening to music. So is there a version of Plex that runs on Rock OS?

By the way, Roon runs my 800K track music library, 99.99% of it local flac files, great on my over speced Windows 10 computer - MMe solid state drive for Roon core and with an internal hard drive plus a few USB external hard drives of the music files.

I’ve stated this before - with the proper hardware and a robust network Roon is rock solid (no pun intended). I like RAAT so much that I am slowly switching over all my Squeezebox end points to RAAT compatible end points. Keep up the great work!

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Roon runs much better on my little Roon Nucleus than it ever did on my over-speced Windows 10 Dell XPS 15 with i7 and 32GB of ram. Too much other stuff going on I think.

My experience is very different. Admittedly my library is nowhere near being described as large, it’s around 20,000 tracks… But on identical hardware (NUC 8i3) I have found Windows 10 to be more performant than ROCK 1.7.

I had upgraded to ROCK specifically because of the performance claims made about this release. But I ended up going back to windows 10. The difference was small, but it was enough to be noticeable.

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ROCK is a closed OS for use as an appliance and therefore doesn’t allow users to change it in any way – but I’m sure you already knew that and it just slipped out of memory for a brief moment. :slightly_smiling_face:

is there interest for this?

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in what way did you measure?

Please don’t pollute ROCK with other loaded apps options, those wanting such setups should use Linux of whatever flavor and do their own tinkering with multiple media streamers


Agreed but ROCK should be able to run Roon Extensions, which are part of the product but it can’t (without help from an external computer). I’d prefer Roon to fix that issue first.


Yes indeed this is a big oversight. No point in offering extensions ability if your own product can’t support it.

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That’s fine with me since as i stated earlier I don’t have any issues with running Roon core and Plex on my Windows 10 computer. It was more of “just wondering” question anyway.

It did. Library at 1.3M+ tracks and Roon now almost unusable. The PC needs a re-boot every night or more frequently, if using it for an hour it slows down to a snails pace. Tidal no longer worked with my setup and slowed it down even further (if that was possible), so I’ve cancelled my subscription.

Audio analysis is disabled while importing new content and enabled briefly to scan new content afterwards.

Looking at the machine’s system resources when it is running very slow, there is no indications of hitting any limit on RAM, CPU, Networking or Storage resources. Only when its performing Audio Analysis does it enjoy the extra resources available to it. Most of the time the system usage is in the baseline static level!



It might be time to pay somebody to take a ground up approach to give you an adequate solution. You have a very challenging situation, and almost nobody (at least on this forum) has experience with such a large library.
Danny offered the advice to have somebody build a system for you. I saw in another post (somewhere), that Andrew Gillis of Small Green Computer built systems for people with very large libraries. The advantages of such an approach are:

  1. A person like him understands system architecture and Roon. It’s not just a lot of powerful parts.
  2. A person like Andrew knows they have to satisfy their customer. Small Green Computer has a history of excellent customer support, but I don’t doubt other builders do as well.
  3. If someone has built a few of these systems in the past, they know what works and what doesn’t. If they’ve built a system that can handle 1.2 M tracks and they have a happy customer, you have a pretty high degree of assurance it will work for you.

Obviously you’ve sunk a lot into this already, and that has to be disappointing (to put it mildly). But putting myself in your place, I’d just want the pain to stop. Now. Perhaps an experienced system builder will be able to make use of some of what you’ve already invested in.