Switching Roon Core from MacBook to Nucleus +

Core Machine (Operating system/System info/Roon build number)

MacBook Pro (15 inch, 2016) running OS 10.14.3 first Core
Now using Nucleus+ (updated to latest firmware

Network Details (Including networking gear model/manufacturer and if on WiFi/Ethernet)

Nucleus+ shows up on my network (Xfinity Ethernet download speed 1.2 Gbps)

Audio Devices (Specify what device you’re using and its connection type - USB/HDMI/ect.)

no problems here - USB to Berkeley Audio DAC etc.

Description Of Issue

I recently purchased Roon, initially using my MacBook Pro (15 inch, 2016) running OS 10.14.3 as Core. Today I took delivery of a Nucleus+ (updated to latest firmware and attempted to make that a Core. I am having trouble: (1) setting up the file storage path to either my 4TB SSD or 12 TB Raid; (2) importing Playlists from iTunes. I made a Roon Backup but can’t find where to set up the new Core from that. Sorry, couldn’t find an existing topic that answered my questions.

I am a Lifetime member. If this gets complicated, I would appreciate a phone number to call.

Hi @Jeff_Gee — Thanks for reaching out!

First, I recommend checking out our Nucleus Migration Guide for a complete guide on switching to a new Core.

Where are these storage devices? Is this a NAS? What path have you tried entering into Roon? We have an article with some helpful tips that I recommend checking out.

We have some documentation on importing iTunes content here. If you’re unsure of how to share the iTunes folder for access over the network, we have instructions here.

We have information about restoring backups here.

Finally, I recommend you check out our Nucleus Manual which includes a full setup guide. If you have any additional questions please let me know!

Hi Dylan,

Thanks for responding so promptly.

I have read most of the articles you mentioned, but will pour over them again to be sure I didn’t miss anything.

Unfortunately the Roon Nucleus+ is at home, where I do most of my listening, so I have to do my tinkering at night, weekends, or Thursday, which is my day off. I’m not in a huge hurry, but I just hope the Nucleus+ works as well (or better) than the MacBook by itself did. I purchased the Nucleus+ so I wouldn’t have to leave the main computer on when I move to other rooms at home to listen.

To briefly answer your questions about storage, the SSD and Raid are where I have all my AIFF or ALAC files. These drives are attached to the MacBook via a hub, not directly to the Nucleus+. Everything is on an Ethernet network. Unlike the MacBook Core setup, when I tried to use the Nucleus+ as Core, I couldn’t seem to navigate to either storage device and see a path, like the one that showed up easily on the MacBook. I’m not sure if the storage drives both have to be formatted as HFS or ExFAT instead of APFS. They worked fine with APFS on MacBook as Core.

Anyway, I will keep reading Roon documentation and get back to you as soon as I have tried everything suggested. So far, though, my inability to find the music files is stopping me in my tracks. Nothing is happening like the pictures in the articles.

Appreciate your patience — I really want this to work!


Hi Dylan,

I did read the Nucleus Migration Guide, but unfortunately it was after I tried starting the Nucleus+ as Core right out of the box. So I didn’t have a backup ready to migrate. Then I tried going back to the MacBook as Core to make the backup, but now I can’t find it to use the way your guide specifies.

Still unable to locate a path to any of the external drives where I store my music files, despite going through all the material you referenced (I only use one drive at a time but have multiple backups). When I go to Roon Settings>Storage>Add Folder, I don’t see any files or folders. I am not sure if I should type in code for Network Share Locations - for example, “smb://host/share” is not familiar to me.

Sorry, I have a fairly rudimentary understanding of computers. However, I should be able to get this working with some explicit instructions.

Look forward to hearing from you at your convenience.


Hi @Jeff_Gee,

Since these are not connected to the Nucleus, you’ll need to add a networked watched folder. For optimal performance, it may be worth trying to connect these drives directly to your Nucleus via USB.

We have some information about Nucleus storage in this article.

Sorry, Dylan, I’ve read all the articles and followed the instructions several times, but still not getting anywhere. I have an external hard drive formatted in HFS connected directly to the Nucleus+ by USB - it’s not showing up on Add Folder or Browse in the Storage Settings (I don’t know how to navigate the network settings). I have another drive connected directly to my MacBook, but it is impossible to locate through Roon Nucleus. I’m sure there’s a simple step I’m missing, but I don’t know what it is.

Everything works fine when I use the MacBook as Core but the Nucleus+ is just stumping me. I thought Nucleus would simplify things, but the opposite is true so far.

Looking forward to hearing your ideas here tomorrow. I will be available all day Thursday - I hope you or a colleague will be available for a brief telephone call or live online chat then if needed.

Thanks again,


Hi @Jeff_Gee,

Can you confirm the type of USB cable you’re using here?

Have you tried using a different cable?

Can you paste the path that you’re trying to use for this connection here? You’ll want to use something like:

\DRIVENAME\Music (for example)
smb://DRIVENAME/Music (for example)

Alternatively, you can use the IP address:

\\Music (for example)
smb:// (for example)

We sometimes hear from people wondering about phone support, email support, or other more traditional methods, and we almost always win them over by resolving problems here every day. I can tell you that we stand behind our products and our support 100%.

Every support thread on this site is tracked by someone on our staff, and they frequently loop in senior staff or developers for feedback. Nearly everyone in our company spends time on this site. With this in mind, a post here on Community is definitely the best way to get things resolved, and I’m confident we can get you up and running here.

Hi Dylan,

The external drive I have connected directly to the Nucleus+ is a 12TB OWC Thunderbay 4 Raid Array formatted in HFS. It has two USB-C outputs and I have used both of them with 2 different well-made USB-C to USB-A cables that came with the drive to connect to the USB ports on the Nucleus. Still not showing up under Storage on Roon, no matter what configuration I try.

As I mentioned, I have another external drive (4TB SSD) attached to the MacBook, which is my usual Storage location with Roon using the MacBook as Core, but which is lost in space when I switch to Core to Nucleus.

I’m afraid I don’t understand your instructions on “pasting the path.” Every time I use Nucleus as Core, when I go to Add Folder in the Storage section of Settings, it takes me to Choose Music Storage Folder page with nothing on it. If I hit Select This Folder and then Browse, it takes me right back to the Choose Music Storage Folder page with nothing on it. The only option on that page is Add Network Share. When I select that, I get Network Share Location. I have tried pasting various paths to the external drive connected to my MacBook in that box, in every possible permutation I can think of, using smb:// and whatever, and I always get a variety of “Unexpected Error” messages. I tried the IP address for the MacBook without success. Are you asking me to paste the IP address of the Nucleus+? I’m afraid that’s beyond the scope of my current knowledge.

This is where my lack of expertise in networking becomes the limiting factor, and your explicit, step-by-step instructions will be invaluable. I have to go to work now but will be back tonight at 6 PM Pacific time and all day tomorrow.

I love Roon when it’s running on my MacBook, and sincerely hope the Nucleus+ will make my experience even better. I will be patient and thank you for bearing with me.

Best regards,


AFAIK Thunderbolt is not supported on Nucleus(+). Also the potential use of software RAID might be problematic.

You have to share this drive from your Mac. Detailed instructions how to this can be found in the
FAQ: How do I create a shared folder on Mac and add it as a watched folder in Roon?

Hi @Jeff_Gee,

I am going to check with the team on this. We will be meeting later today to discuss and I’ll follow up with you with their feedback ASAP.

First, you’ll need to make sure that the folder is appropriately shared over the network. The link that BlackJack shared above has step by step instructions and screenshots for doing this.

Once you’ve confirmed that it’s shared, can you share what the path is that you’re entering into Roon? By this, I mean what you’re entering when you go to Add Network Share. We can take a look at the path you’re entering and help make sure it’s correctly formatted.


Thanks Dylan and BlackJack,

  1. First of all, I’d like to thank you very much for your help! After reading the article BlackJack cited and a few tries I was able to create a shared folder on my Mac which was recognized by Roon using Nucleus+ as Core. However, it seems that if I close the laptop, Nucleus+ can no longer access the drive connected to the MacBook.

  2. Therefore, I decided to pursue your recommendation to connect a storage drive directly to Nucleus+. I reformatted an OWC Mercury Elite Pro Dual 4 TB drive to ExFAT, copied my music files, including my iTunes Music Library.xml and itl files, and connected it to Nucleus+ by USB. It works!

  3. My only (minor) quibbles are:
    (a) my iTunes playlists are not showing up on Roon, even though the xml file is in the same folder as the music files. I tried reimporting and rescanning to no avail. However, this is not a big deal to me, as I like the Roon Genre and Shuffle as much as my old playlists. I will study your Knowledge base further.
    (b) My music storage will soon exceed 4 TB, and I want to be sure I upgrade to the best possible Mac solution for an external drive to connect directly to Nucleus+. Are you sure that RAID drives are unacceptable? I will read more about this as well (for future questions, should I start a new topic?)

  4. Bottom line: I am a very happy Roon customer! Thank you both SO much for your prompt and thoughtful help.


As an addendum to Item 3 (b) above, I would like to specifically ask if two 4 TB SSD external drives can be connected to the Nucleus+ and used together to store a library of 8 TB. If so, is a USB-C to USB-A cable OK? The drives I have in mind are Oyen Digital U32 Shadow Drives.

No urgency on this, but look forward to hearing from you after you discuss with the Roon team. Thanks!


Hi @Jeff_Gee,

I spoke with the team about the OWC external drive and wanted to follow up with their feedback. The drive you have uses thunderbolt ports, which as mentioned in the Nucleus Manual, the Thunderbolt port on the Nucleus is not currently supported.

With that said, if you were to use an adapter or cable that connected this drive to the Nucleus via the standard USB ports and passes the data along to the Nucleus as if it were a standard USB device, that should theoretically work. This is not something that we officially support and our QA team does not test these devices for compatibility, but it may be possible.

Since this device isn’t showing on the Nucleus currently, it’s likely that the device isn’t passing information to the Nucleus as a standard USB drive, and so that’s why it’s not showing up.

You could use two different drives for music storage, they would just be treated as two different watched folders in Roon. When you add a new drive you’ll just add it to Settings > Storage as you did the first one.

As with the OWC drive mentioned above, as long as the drive is passing data to the Nucleus as a standard USB device would, not USB C, things should work for you here.

3. (a): A guide how-to setup iTunes.

I personally would use a Network Attached Storage (NAS) device to host the music library (and also maybe videos, photos, …) and use the external USB drives to back-up the data on the NAS. By adding-up the TB numbers of your previous posts, I would choose a ≥ 4-drive up model (they typically allow RAID configurations with RAID-levels > 1). Best known brands are QNAP and Synology but also others exist.
I do not want to conceal that a NAS is a rather complex device of it’s own and the proper setup may bear some hurdles for the inexperienced user.

Thank you Dylan and BlackJack,

I will try your suggestions and do some more reading about and experimenting with my iTunes library and storage options. After a bit of a rocky start, I am delighted with the Roon Nucleus+!!

Thanks again,


I do not want to conceal that a NAS is a rather complex device of it’s own and the proper setup may bear some hurdles for the inexperienced user.

I fully agree with your advice, and not least the quoted part.
I still haven’t (as an inexperienced user) after spendig xxx hours figured out how to use my Synology NAS for backing up my music files stored at my Nucleus internal hhd. Its not a recommended direction to move for “IT dummies, but music lovers”.

I’m sorry to hear that, but there are already several threads in the forum that discuss solutions:

Maybe one of them might be of help.

Thanks for input, will be studying it closely and hopefully it helps!
What I do not understand, is why Roon has backup command for music data but not music files stored.

In this way, its not a “plug and play” solution as I expected, when buying this fairly expensive package for music handling.

I fear that for “IT dummies, but music lovers” Roon is probably not the best solution. It does have quite a learning curve, which requires either deep immersion into the subject or outside help.

I used to use a NAS drive for my music, but have since moved to a 3TB USB 3.0 drive, connected directly to one of the USB 3.0 ports on my Nucleus. It works perfectly, which includes with all of my FLAC files and my iTunes AAC library.
Perhaps this is the best way to go.