Which Intel NUC

Can I put ROCK onto a NUC that has a standard SSD (not M.2) and has Windows on it? I didn’t research enough prior to my purchase and ended up buying the NUC 11PAHi7 with 16GB of RAM and 512 GB of SSD as it was on sale. It also has built in Windows 10 Pro.

This will only be used with Roon.

Do I have to get a bareboned one and add the M.2 SSD and RAM?


Why not simply install Roon onto the Windows NUC & then you’re immediately ‘good to go’?

You can then also use it for other functions / services - e.g. running a Plex Server at the same time.

This is exactly what I do with my NUC 7i7BNH - the flexibility has been extremely useful over the years.

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No. The ROCK installer will erase and then install on the M2 drive. Any SATA drive is reserved for music files. That’s the way it works… if you want something else, forget ROCK.

Just add an M2 drive, problem solved. Your music can go on the SATA SSD.


You can do one of two things:

  1. Install ROCK on the NUC as it stands - this will obliterate the windows installation. This is the simplest way forward - but you will loose the Windows install and you may not be able to get it back in the future.
  2. Buy a new small (128GByte or 256GByte) M.2 NVME SSD and swap it with the one already installed in the NUC.

The issues around the choice as to which way to proceed are discussed in the thread at Upgrading to nuc8i7beh used nuc - suggestionsrequested.

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Thank you.

I wanted a ‘set it and forget it’ setup and have the NUC for Roon, only. Right now, the Roon core is on a laptop and for some reason it’s getting fidgetty.

I don’t care about the Windows. So are you saying I won’t need to get a different, M.2 SSD?

Thanks for the thread. I’ll check it out.

That model is fine. I would still buy an NVMe SSD for the O/S and Roon’s database. Will cost around $50 for a good one.

SAMSUNG 980 SSD 500GB PCle 3.0x4, NVMe M.2 2280, Internal Solid State Drive, Storage for PC, Laptops, Gaming and More, HMB Technology, Intelligent Turbowrite, Speeds up-to 3,500MB/s, MZ-V8V500B/AM https://a.co/d/aucmgRh

You could use the SATA SSD for music

Thanks, David.

Just ordered it.

FYI, my NUC got a small volume SSD (SATA) and a 2TB nvme SSD.

Even officially Roon recommends to use the nvme SSD for ROCK OS, and SSD for music files, as limited by the volume of these SSDs, I only can installed ROCK OS in SATA SSD and stored music files (all .wav, .dsf from 16/44.1 to 32bit DXD, DSD64 to DSD256) in nvms SSD. Since the installation, they all works fluently.

In my understanding, ROCK OS will load itself totally into the RAM to run and then no need to access that OS SSD except writing data. And from the architecture, nvms communicates with CPU and memory more directly than SATA bus. Being an IT layman, as the music files nvme SSD are always frequently accessed and those hi res files are much larger in size, I suspect, will the latency lower when using nvme SSD to store music files, than using suggested SATA SSD to store music files?

It’s literally already set-and-forget - you just have to download & install Roon Core and change the Core settings to suit and you can get started.
Switch off Windows updates & there’s nothing else you have to do.

As mentioned, I use mine for other tasks - as a Media PC / hub (but not as my main PC) - so I’ve left Windows updates on & have set the NUC to reboot @ 05:00 in the morning - in case any reboots are required from time to time.

However, if you’re saying that you do not want to use Windows at all (which you haven’t stated so far), then fine - go ahead & install Rock!

IMHO running Rock on a NUC / PC is just a waste of hardware which can be used for so much more, but that’s everyone’s personal decision of course!

That was my perspective for a number of years, but it can be expensive or a hassle to leave a general purpose PC (think larger desktop or laptop) powered on and connected to the network all of the time. A NUC mostly solves the cost-of-power issue (my NUC only draws 10 watts), but running Microsoft Windows means dealing with patch Tuesday, reboots for updates, and troubleshooting when Roon Server fails to start automatically.

Although I was able to use my NUC for other things, ultimately, it made more sense for me to buy a second small desktop computer for those tasks (e.g., CD ripping with dBpoweramp) and dedicate the NUC to Roon OS. I still have to deal with updates nearly every time I power on the second computer, but at least my family does not have to bug me about Roon being offline. Roon OS just works.


Which is why I’ve set my (Roon Core) Windows NUC to auto-reboot every morning, and added Roon / Plex / etc. to the StartUp folder.
I never have to worry about it either - it also ‘just works’ and I have the full benefit of a ‘spare’ Windows machine available if I need it for any other tasks that run 24/7 or need automation.

Anyway, we’re largely in agreement - it’s just a question of available philosophies & options & choices!

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