What else can I do with my ROCK?

I’ve been using my NUC ROCK (8i3) for half a year now and I like it a lot. But most of the time it is just idling because I am not listening to music more than a few hours a day. So, I was wondering if there is anything else I could use it for when not listening to music, if I connect an external ssd to it via usb. Does the external drive work like a NAS that is accessible to other devices on my network (e.g., Mac, iPad, Aplle TV)? Or would I be better off connecting an external drive to my wifi router?

Use cases I am considering are: video and photo storage and streaming; backup disk for other devices (Mac/iPad).

Any insights and additional ideas for how I could use my ROCK would be much appreciated!

If you want to do something else with the machine, you can install a general use Linux distribution or Windows and install Roon core on it. Then, you can use it as any other Linux or Windows computer.

The external drive is available as a network share, so you could use this—capacity permitting—to share media files etc. on your home network. However, you cannot install additional applications on ROCK.


Dear Martin, thanks for confirming that the external drive can be used that way! Does this have any benefit over connecting an external drive to my Wifi router (e.g. performance)?

Dear Marian, thanks for the suggestion, but I prefer to run ROCK on the machine because I want it to run headlessly 24/7 without having to worry about software updates and downtime. I have Mac and Windows computers for everything else. What I am looking for are other things that the ROCK can do it in the background when I’m not listening to music. I did consider getting a separate NAS, but I don’t want to have another device running around the clock and consuming energy.

Both should be connected to Ethernet, but I expect the NUC has a better performing processor than the router. There’s no harm in trying both and comparing results.

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I switch my Nucleus off

It boots in <1min - and an electricity saving, albeit small, is a saving


Just be aware that if you are using that drive in Settings==>Storage to point to music and you are specifying the root directory of that drive, then any nested directories will also be scanned by Roon.

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If you use an External Drive, then you can use parts of it without the data being scanned by Roon. I would not use an Internal Drive for this at all as it is scanned by Roon.

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There is stress in the system when you power on. Less so with SSDs than harddrives, but still. I leave all my computers on all the time

Nothing. For best Roon experience don’t use it for anything else and let it run 24/7/365. In 2 1/2 years, I’ve never turned off my Nucleus except to reboot.