need upgrade ideas for dedicated roon server

MikeyFresh

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a bit of excitement here. i have been having an internet problem (probably the router; a new one on its way). this seemed to take out my roon server, which was still on the old dell laptop. i tried to get roon server reinstalled on the laptop with no success. i reached out to the roon community support, which was very helpful.

anyways, this spurred me to dig my gateway PC out of the garage and set it up. per our previous discussions, i installed a new solid state hard drive on the gateway and updated its ram to 16gb. here are the specs on the Gateway: Pentium Dual-Core G630 2.7GHz.

i created a new boot disk using rufus for mint cinnamon 20.3 64 bit. i was able to boot it up and install mint. after a bit of back and forth, the roon community folks got my roon server up and running! now i am back in business and have a much better, faster roon server :)
Congrats! Sounds like thats going to be a lot more capable server machine than an old/tiring laptop.
 
I an not sure of how well this might work with Roon but it may be of interest of folks with ancient computers that they may want to try to use as Linux based music servers.

As much as I like Mint Linux, it has definitely put on a lot of weight since I started using it. This is reasonable given that Windows continuous progression has made a lot of computer hardware obsolete in its wake. This newer hardware may no longer support Windows use but it is great for the current generations of Mint and other Ubuntu based Linux distributions. Ubuntu no longer supports 32 bit hardware. The Debian branch of Linux still does support it.

I recently discovered that the Linux distribution Peppermint is again alive and well and has a new distribution that is Debian based. Peppermint was a great lightweight distro in the past when I used it but it had a fallen into disrepair when its chief programmer died. The Peppermint crew soldiered on and created a new version of the operating system. The new Peppermint is is available in both 32 and 64 bit versions. I have no 32 bit hardware but have installed the 64 bit system on a few modest computers. Its a la carte approach makes for a very compact operating system. I have one computer with Peppermint, Chromium browser and the Linux music player Audacious and it uses only only 6 GB of the 16 GB hard drive. Mint would typically use about twice that amount of the hard drive capacity.

I like this new operating system and thought others here might be interested as well.
 

airdronian

Radar Member
I an not sure of how well this might work with Roon but it may be of interest of folks with ancient computers that they may want to try to use as Linux based music servers.

As much as I like Mint Linux, it has definitely put on a lot of weight since I started using it. This is reasonable given that Windows continuous progression has made a lot of computer hardware obsolete in its wake. This newer hardware may no longer support Windows use but it is great for the current generations of Mint and other Ubuntu based Linux distributions. Ubuntu no longer supports 32 bit hardware. The Debian branch of Linux still does support it.

I recently discovered that the Linux distribution Peppermint is again alive and well and has a new distribution that is Debian based. Peppermint was a great lightweight distro in the past when I used it but it had a fallen into disrepair when its chief programmer died. The Peppermint crew soldiered on and created a new version of the operating system. The new Peppermint is is available in both 32 and 64 bit versions. I have no 32 bit hardware but have installed the 64 bit system on a few modest computers. Its a la carte approach makes for a very compact operating system. I have one computer with Peppermint, Chromium browser and the Linux music player Audacious and it uses only only 6 GB of the 16 GB hard drive. Mint would typically use about twice that amount of the hard drive capacity.

I like this new operating system and thought others here might be interested as well.
Interesting, I'll have to check that out. When I installed Linux for Roon I decided to use it with a desktop environment, and chose xfce to keep things a bit lighter than KDE or Gnome. Mine's currently Mint 20.3 64 bit.
 

rogerfederer

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i decided to go with mint cinnamon because i figured there would be more people familiar with it if i run into problems (being a linux novice). so far, so good.
 

MikeyFresh

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i decided to go with mint cinnamon because i figured there would be more people familiar with it if i run into problems (being a linux novice). so far, so good.
If I recall you were going ahead with a 250GB SSD upgrade too, so some of what is being described there as far as disk space needed to run Mint vs. something leaner like Peppermint is fairly moot at that point.

Perhaps a much different story when trying to run it as lean as possible on the hardware side of things, from a 16 or 32GB SSD.

I had wondered out loud around when you started this thread if Roon offered their own stripped-Linux install which wasn't just a Room Server/Core program, but the entire operating system. Sometime thereafter @Shindogreen noted they do, it's called ROCK and is probably the leanest way to do this. However that also means you won't be multi using that computer for any other purpose, that install is Roon Core only and you don't then have the option of using the computer for any other applications/tasks at that point, it becomes a truly dedicated Roon Server.
 

rogerfederer

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If I recall you were going ahead with a 250GB SSD upgrade too, so some of what is being described there as far as disk space needed to run Mint vs. something leaner like Peppermint is fairly moot at that point.

Perhaps a much different story when trying to run it as lean as possible on the hardware side of things, from a 16 or 32GB SSD.

I had wondered out loud around when you started this thread if Roon offered their own stripped-Linux install which wasn't just a Room Server/Core program, but the entire operating system. Sometime thereafter @Shindogreen noted they do, it's called ROCK and is probably the leanest way to do this. However that also means you won't be multi using that computer for any other purpose, that install is Roon Core only and you don't then have the option of using the computer for any other applications/tasks at that point, it becomes a truly dedicated Roon Server.
here is the info re rock:
either you buy their hardware--starts at $1,400--or build machine to their specs

for me the gateway in the garage was the cost effective option ;)
 

MikeyFresh

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here is the info re rock:
either you buy their hardware--starts at $1,400--or build machine to their specs

for me the gateway in the garage was the cost effective option ;)

It's not a hard requirement to build it exactly as they say, they just give a few examples involving the NUC because it is a good choice and a popular device. However the machine you have certainly has the horsepower from all I've gathered. Note I'm not suggesting ROCK is the way to go at all, as again, it rules out using the machine for any other purpose but Roon Core Server.

What I was saying is if your machine can run Roon Core Server on Linux Mint, then surely it can run ROCK as that is totally striped of anything except what's necessary to run Roon Core Server, in other words less burdensome on system resources than something like Mint.

They are only suggesting how to build the machine, not mandating it:

"If you are willing to buy computer components, put it together, and install the operating system by hand, we suggest the configurations below."

Component
NUC10i3FNH
8GB RAM
128GB M.2 SSD


They then go on to further specify the machine suggestion based on how many albums you have, starting with 12k+... etc.
 

rogerfederer

Junior Member
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It's not a hard requirement to build it exactly as they say, they just give a few examples involving the NUC because it is a good choice and a popular device. However the machine you have certainly has the horsepower from all I've gathered. Note I'm not suggesting ROCK is the way to go at all, as again, it rules out using the machine for any other purpose but Roon Core Server.

What I was saying is if your machine can run Roon Core Server on Linux Mint, then surely it can run ROCK as that is totally striped of anything except what's necessary to run Roon Core Server, in other words less burdensome on system resources than something like Mint.

They are only suggesting how to build the machine, not mandating it:

"If you are willing to buy computer components, put it together, and install the operating system by hand, we suggest the configurations below."

Component
NUC10i3FNH
8GB RAM
128GB M.2 SSD


They then go on to further specify the machine suggestion based on how many albums you have, starting with 12k+... etc.
ok, helpful; something to consider. i kinda like having the roonserver/linux setup because if something goes wrong i can use the linux terminal and file program to try and sort it out.

if rock really runs forever and never needs anything then that could be the ticket.
 

MikeyFresh

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ok, helpful; something to consider. i kinda like having the roonserver/linux setup because if something goes wrong i can use the linux terminal and file program to try and sort it out.

if rock really runs forever and never needs anything then that could be the ticket.
I personally would do it just as you did, as the main goal here was to get away from all of those damn Windows updates/restarts and the background process bloat that was causing you issues.

You've accomplished that goal and are in a much better place overall I'm sure, I don't see why one would need to pare it back to the bare minimum such that the machine can't used for any other purpose, however I was just pointing out for posterity here that Shindogreen's previous mention of using ROCK is another valid choice in lean-Linux land.
 
Just to clear things up. The Peppermint alternative I suggested is bare bones but it is not so lean that it can only be used for one purpose. It is great for a casual desktop computer but it may not have a lot of features as part of the basic package. Features can be added as desired. An advantage of the leaner machine is that there is less running in the background that may affect the quality of the sound from the music server.

Mint is a very nice operating system. It is my usual "go to" system for my computers. It also gets very frequent updates. The "Update Manager" icon in the tray is constantly nagging me to update things. Fortunately the update process for Mint is a minor inconvenience compared to the process for Windows. A suggestion for you Mint users is to click on "Update Manager", Edit","Preferences", "Automation" and then enable "Automatic Maintenance". This will automatically delete obsolete Linux kernels as they are updated. These kernels would otherwise keep piling up and would voraciously eat up space in a small hard drive.
 

airdronian

Radar Member
Just to clear things up. The Peppermint alternative I suggested is bare bones but it is not so lean that it can only be used for one purpose. It is great for a casual desktop computer but it may not have a lot of features as part of the basic package. Features can be added as desired. An advantage of the leaner machine is that there is less running in the background that may affect the quality of the sound from the music server.

Mint is a very nice operating system. It is my usual "go to" system for my computers. It also gets very frequent updates. The "Update Manager" icon in the tray is constantly nagging me to update things. Fortunately the update process for Mint is a minor inconvenience compared to the process for Windows. A suggestion for you Mint users is to click on "Update Manager", Edit","Preferences", "Automation" and then enable "Automatic Maintenance". This will automatically delete obsolete Linux kernels as they are updated. These kernels would otherwise keep piling up and would voraciously eat up space in a small hard drive.
I've been surprised how often the kernel is updated, on my system they are about 380 MB each. That would definitely become an issue if using a small ssd. Since I am mostly using a Chromebook, I don't have remote desktop capability to the Roon server. I use an ssh terminal for updates, the command sudo apt autoremove takes care of those pesky obsolete kernels.
 
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