Roon without Tags

(Darryl Roberson) #1

Roon is a great product but when I first tried it, it had far too much emphasis on tag data for me. I have everything I want in my folder names (composer -> works) and filenames (movement, song, etc.). Hopefully it is a little more flexible in this respect now.

Also, I’d like to install it on an Ubuntu 18 server with a bridged connection to the endpoint, and with the control point on a Windows 10 machine.

Any pointers on any of these requirements is greatly appreciated.

(GaryM) #2

no change to lack of folder browsing (see other threads on this; no plans to change this).
Yes, can have core server on linux machine and a control point on a win 10 machine (or any other machine (windows, Mac, Linux) on your local network, including smart phones/pads)

(Darryl Roberson) #3

Thanks Gary. If you’re familiar with the forum, could you point me to a thread which discusses the best workaround for dealing with metadata requirements. It was over a year ago when I tried it and if I recall Roon tried to populate some tags in the server database, but it was not entirely successful, and many albums were not properly categorized.

(Ged) #4

Depends on how long ago you looked at it. You can now prefer file metadata which may help.

(GaryM) #5

Try this one:

If your files have tags, then Roon has an option to prefer your own tags. Also, if you don’t have tags, but all the info is contained in folder and file names, then mp3tag can easily extract the info from folder/files and create the metadata tags. If systematic organization, this can be done in a giant batch automatically once setup with mapping string. (yes, mp3tag works with almost any type of file). See:

One would use the menu item “Convert” then chose “filename to tag”. Very useful tool.

(Darryl Roberson) #6

That’s a good plan; my folder and files are very organized, and I currently need a prep step anyway to decompress the flacs.

I am however concerned about the Ubuntu install option. I recently upgraded to Unbuntu 18 minimal install which was perfect with Twonky, but I’m not so comfortable with Linux, and the install requirements concern me. I’m most comfortable with Windows 10, but it was not so cooperative with network bridging, which I need to use. Any help with this requirement also greatly appreciated.

(GaryM) #7

Can’t help with that. I suggest you start another thread on the install issues with an informative subject line. No one reading this thread will be thinking about helping with install issues.

(Martin Webster) #8

Installing Roon Server on Ubuntu is straightforward.

sudo apt update
sudo apt install cifs-utils curl ffmpeg
curl -O
chmod +x
sudo ./

(Darryl Roberson) #9

Thank you Martin. You’re right, Roon does make this easy. And it looks like I wouldn’t need cifs-utils since the music is local. I was concerned because the alsa packages didn’t look right; I only saw alsa-base and utils, but I’ll take your word on this.

(Darryl Roberson) #10

Disregard earlier post. “Prefer file” works pretty well now.

(Mike) #11

What are you seeing that’s wrong?

We definitely look at folder structure, but we don’t have options that say “ignore tags” for example – everything is designed to be automatically imported into our system, and kept in layers, which you can configure to show the data you want.

This article is a little old, but there are some more details here.

It’s possible Roon found your artwork, but used ours instead because it’s higher resolution – that’s the default behavior. If that’s the case, you can fix this by changing your cover art settings in Settings > Library > Import Settings.

If we didn’t find your art, you should let us know what the file and folder names are – there are some conventions we follow for smart handling of front covers, back covers, liner notes, etc.

This isn’t really how Roon works – you’re thinking about this like files on a hard drive, where Roon is designed to identify and understand your music, and obviate the need for this kind of manual organization, where you might have to make a decision about whether a given artist is classical or not, for example.

In our composer browser, for example, you can choose whether non-classical composers are shown at all.


You can also pick whether to sort by first or last name, and you filter by period, country, etc. But of course, all this functionality requires that your content is identified by Roon.

Hope that helps!

(Darryl Roberson) #12

Mike, it had been over a year since I used this and the “prefer file” options work quite a bit better now. Seems you grabbed my post before I edited it. In fact, I really like this now.

(Darryl Roberson) #13

Okay, I ran the prescribed steps and saw messages that Roon server should be running as a service, but nothing is in the System Monitor, and there is no icon anywhere to change settings. Kind of clueless here …

(Martin Webster) #14

I’m pretty sure the install script does this, but no harm executing the following:

sudo systemctl enable roonserver.service

This will enable Roon to run at boot.

To manually stop | start | restart | status use the following, e.g.

sudo systemctl start roonserver.service
sudo systemctl status roonserver.service

(Darryl Roberson) #15

Thanks Martin. I ran them in a terminal session, and it appears to running, but it says closing the terminal will kill the process. What am I doing wrong? Also, I’ve only used Roon on a single computer before, so how do I get to the settings, install remote?

I installed Ubuntu 18 with the minimal install option. I’m wondering if that left out some things I need now.

(Martin Webster) #16

When you next reboot, you won’t have this issue since it will start on boot. For now, run this:

sudo systemctl start roonserver.service

Then press <ctrl>z followed by

sudo bg

This sends the job to the background. You should now be able to close the terminal with Roon stopping.

(Martin Webster) #17

Yes, you’ll need Roon (Windows or MacOS) or RoonRemote (iOS or Android) to control Roon.

(Darryl Roberson) #18

Thank you for the kind help Martin. I expected to see something in the system monitor. Is systemctl the only way to know if the service is running?

(Martin Webster) #19

You should see RoonServer and RoonAppliance running. From the console type htop.