New Roon server with large internal storage

So its time to redo/upgrade my ROON server and have been looking at NUCs, tiny pc’s, small form factors etc… but having a difficult time finding something that will accommodate a larger 3.5” HD capacity (8TB). An equiv 8TB ssd is way too expensive for this exercise.

I currently use a NAS (for music storage), but I’m wanting to move everything onto this new core and would also like to use Ubuntu OS as the ROON server. I don’t/won’t use an external USB drive for this.

My current Roon server is a Win10 Pro tower wkst but is getting old (high pwr usage, older Xeon w/ TDP 130w, 500w PS). It is working just fine, but it seems like a bit much nowadays.


  1. Does it make sense to find/build a basic smaller tower (modern i5 or i7 CPU, 8-16GB mem, 256 SSD) and add a WD Red 3.5” 8TB for music lib

  2. Do the high capacity HD (6-12TB) pose a problem with regard to power requirements or something else I’m not aware of in a tower, mini PC’s etc…?

  3. Will this change create issues with my current ROON db => e.g. migrating to this new setup, is it simply copy music files over to new drive/server, restore the db? I know there are threads/steps for doing so, but just asking in a general sense.

I’ll be doing something similar in the near future but I’ll be sticking with SSD storage as my recent experiences have convinced me that fast and local is GOOD!

Thanks for the input.

  1. Noise isn’t an issue and forgot to mention everything runs next to network rack in util room. I use HQP and have a separate wkst running Server 2019 for that which feeds to an endpoint. I’ll have to read up on differences/preferences to using ROCK versus Ubuntu or Win. But I recall that ROCK has a specific image one can apply using Roons approved NUC list (I think)

  2. Yes understood one would run a HD off the systems main PSU, but many of the per-configured mini/micro PC’s I have scoured through only offer say a 1 or 2TB HD in their secondary storage options and was wondering if that had some technological significance. If one can pop in whatever size they wish then that makes it a bit more easy.

  3. SMB typasituation? “Type of situation” maybe? If you could elaborate a bit on this paragraph that would be helpful. I’m assuming you are saying SMB can be touchy and or have to fiddle with to get to work? I’m only really used to Win networking and have a solid understanding of that. I also understand that file naming and shares can cause issues, but again my background is mainly Win. I also have a solid back up routine in my current enviro (but is Win based of course).

I really just want something powerful enough to last for awhile as my db + files grow and it also seems like a better option to put everything local on the core vs a NAS.etc…Additionally, for a server role such as this, I do get tired of the Win updates, which have gone fine but…

Yeah that’s a good idea, but an 8TB SSD is around $800-$1400 which is more than I want to spend.

Pretty much - it’ll run on other motherboards, but that isn’t officially supported.

Advantages and disadvantages is that you don’t have the flexibility to mess around with it. This is good because it then runs as an appliance, and bad if you like messing around.

Yeah, that’s a physical size limit: bigger 2,5" non-ssd’s need another platter, and they’re physically higher. You could of course dremel your way out of the situation in some of the cases, but that wouldn’t be pretty.

I ran into annoying issues transferring my files via SMB: rSync would not copy some stuff over, but it’d still show up as there in Windows, MacOS, and linux, be it through terminal or the guis. Turns out it was some type of naming weirdness.

I’m still not entirely sure of what went down, I suspect something to do with the way unRaid mounts smb shares, but going through everything, stop on fail, rename the offending folder / tracks (which didn’t necessarily have special characters, felt a bit random), start again, stop on fail, rename, carry on, worked.

OK, makes sense

just as an example, something like this, open box price - add a large drive, use the installed win10 pro or load ubuntu and call it good. Its prob a bit overkill but would smoke a NUC and cheaper

What’s wrong with using flamethrowers (or atom bombs, for that matter) to kill mosquitoes ?

Yes, you do make a good point.

The 8 tb spinner will work just fine, 16 GB is fine until you reach 500k or higher tracks. Storage doesn’t really need to be at SSD speeds. When it comes to moving over to the new rig, follow the Migration guidelines and you should be fine. (Don’t get rid of the old Core until the new one is up and going, imho). Tower cases are just fine. If you have the space, the bigger the better for working inside them.

For reference, see my current Core: The Soul of a New Machine

@Rugby Lots of good info, thank you!.

I did pick up the item I linked above and a HD and will work on this wknd to prep for 1.8. This will be just for Core duties only. I have my other high wkst for HQP etc…

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Just a FWIW. I was able to successfully build up this new core server with ubuntu server and migrate everything (db + files) as well as upgrade to 1.8. So the stated goal was met and looks like I’ll be able to retire my old core. It took me a little less then a week putzing with it to finally migrate.

Not being familiar with Linux, I ended up with a huge cheat sheet of commands that I continually referenced since there are a million different ways to accomplish a task

The file/db scanning (top right spinning wheel) took an entire day to complete. Not sure if this was a 1.8 thing or due to migrating to a new server. Copying data from NAS to internal HD took about 8hrs at full GB speed

Next, I’m looking to build up a high end fanless audio PC to run HQP