Taking Roon on Vacation

I’d like to take Roon on holiday with me. Is there a how-to or forum post?

My Roon setup:

  • Is on a Mac Mini
  • Is mostly used with Tidal
  • Points to a folder with about 300gb of ripped albums and the odd hi-res download

I’d like to copy it to a Mac Book Pro in such a way that when I get back from holiday, I can continue to use my original/main instance.

I know my round a Mac so feel free to be technical. I won’t need to be hand held through the process.



My travel setup is using Roon as the core on my MacBook. At home I have another computer as core, with a 2TB drive.

The night before I head off, I’ll drag the entire music folder from that 2TB drive on to XLD on the MacBook. XLD is setup to convert to high quality AAC, and add to my ~/music folder, with directory structure intact. Each time I do this only the new files get updated (thanks for not touching tags Roon!). My MacBook HDD is 512gb, so the AAC conversion ends up being ~250gb, so still plenty of HDD space left.

That folder is then the main folder for Roon as core on the MacBook. I load up Roon, and switch to my MacBook as the core.

Upside: Super simple.
Downside: You don’t get playlists or tags etc. that are in your “main” Roon core.
Unsure: I don’t use Tidal so have no idea how this approach would work there!

Just asking out of curiosity: Is there a limit to the number of times you can authorize/deauthorize your roon core? I’m running ROCK on an Intel NUC at home, but I could potentially re-host the core to a laptop with a big disk when going away. I just don’t wanna risk not being able to get back on my main system afterwards.

Downside? --> No.
Backup your main core at home the night before travel. Restore the back on the MacBook core, point the core to the new folder on your MacBook and all your playlists and tags are there!
Tidal --> Easy easy easy.
Just log in to Tidal on Roon (MacBook) and all your favorites and playlist will appear just as they were on you main core at home.

AFAIK, no, there’s no limit; you can move your license around as often as you like. It would be strange if there were, because this would make those who move their licenses around (e.g. between locations) very unhappy, and no-one has raised it as an issue in the forums in the past three years.

1 Like

Thanks for the description Nic. I wondered about an effective workflow to make road music happen, and it seems you’ve come up with a good one.

Questions: will XLD run on autopilot, say, nightly converting new stuff? About how long would a complete conversion take? What’s the rest of your road setup look like (DAC, cans, etc)?

Given you know your way around a Mac - you could run a cron job to do the XLD conversion every night. XLD runs from the command line, so it would just be a matter of getting your settings right. If cron jobs scare you, it could perhaps be done in Automator? (I know nothing about Automator though I’ll admit!)

In terms of speed - my collection is most 16/44.1 FLAC, and on a 2yr old MacBook it converts at ~20x. So 3-4 minutes per album.

As for my travel setup - the simplest version is a Dragonfly Red and Final E5000 IEMs (as per here). If I’m going away for a bit longer and know I’ll have time for hotel-room listening, I’ll pack my Grado’s and a Schiit Fulla 2. And given I’m in Australia most flights are 8+ hours, so I do sometimes run the Schiit off my laptop and use my iPad as a remote while flying. :slight_smile:

OK this is awesome if true. But two possible snags…

  1. Does the backup restore perfectly even if the library path is different? (quite cool if true!)
  2. Does it also work if the file formats are different? (I’m not travelling with a 2TB external just for my library)

(I’d give this a shot but I’m not at home to get the backup!)

Both are correct.

  1. Backup restores perfectly, did this just two weeks ago. Having said that, I had a backup restore fail once a few months ago. I didn’t know why. My solution back then was to use Freefilesync to sync the RoonServer folder on my then Windows 10 core (have since changed to ROCK on standalone micro-pc) to the RoonServer folder on my MacBook Pro. And it worked fine. Still the better option is to backup and restore. The library path been different does not matter because after your restore is complete,

    you go into settings --> storage and edit your music folder path.

  2. This should be true as long as the file names and folder structure were not changed during re-encoding to a different format, perhaps @support can chime in on this.

Amazing. I’m giving this a crack as soon as I’m back home!

Again, thanks for the info Nic. If Roon doesn’t come up with its own mobile solution, I think I’ll try yours. It’s some really good Schiit! (Sorry, couldn’t resist)

Hello @Nic,

I wanted to answer a few of your questions here since @kayo tagged support. Yes, you can authorize/deauthorize your Roon core as many times as you’d like and the best way to transfer cores would be to use Roon’s Backup/Restore feature as to preserve your edits and playlists.

Transferring backups will work with different formatted drives, the only thing I would make sure to do is copy the entire RoonBackups folder over (and not just a subfolder) and then after restoring the backup manually point Roon to the media files.

Roon detects media files not by folder path, but by matching the audio signature of individual files (so please don’t keep duplicates in watched locations as this may cause issues to your edits). Just so you’re aware, we also have a migration guide that has an overview of the migrating cores process. Hope this helps.


Thanks everyone. I have a very static; I haven’t bought a download or CD in more than a year, local media library, so the process was quite simple. Your help and suggestions was much appreciated:-)

I’m doing this to duplicate/backup my music to an external USB drive.
All it takes is a shell script running rsync and a crontab entry to set the schedule.