ROCK: Storage Basics

ROCK: Storage Basics

ROCK offers a few different options for storing your music, each with advantages and disadvantages.

Whatever storage configuration you're using with ROCK, you'll want to read  this article about importing your music into Roon. If you are using internal or USB storage, you will also want to read this article about copying music to ROCK.

Internal Storage

If your NUC has space for an internal hard drive, this can be an appealing, high-performance option. Advantages include:
  1. High performance
  2. No additional devices or USB drives connected to your server
There are a few disadvantages to using the NUCs internal storage, including:
  1. The internal drive is formatted from the web interface when you first set up ROCK, so you won't be able pre-load music onto the drive -- you'll start with an empty drive, and copy your music over later
  2. The largest hard disk that you can currently fit in a NUC is 2TB, and the largest SSD is 8TB
  3. It’s more work to replace an internal drive if it fails, since you need to open up the NUC to swap it
Once you add internal storage, it will show up on the Storage tab of Settings automatically:

External Storage (USB)

If you don't mind connecting a USB drive to your server, this is an extremely flexible option. Advantages include:
  1. High performance
  2. You choose how and when to format the drive
  3. No copying of music is required after setting up ROCK
  4. Easy to replace in case of drive failure
  5. Easy to upgrade at a later date
The only real disadvantage of external storage is that you will need to have the USB drive connected to your server.

To add an external storage device, navigate to Settings > Storage and choose Add Folder. You can then navigate to the external storage device and select it, as seen below:

Network Storage (NAS)

Like any other Roon Server, ROCK supports SMB network storage, and will work with most NAS devices.

If you already own a NAS, this is a good option as it will use the device you already own, and won't require any copying of your media or formatting of your drives.

Disadvantages of network storage include:
  1. Susceptibility to networking issues
  2. Most NAS devices do a poor job reporting changes to Roon, which may necessitate more frequent rescans in order to detect newly added content
  3. Some NAS models exhibit poor performance when compared to USB or internal drives, particularly WD MyCloud and Drobo products

USB Storage - Best Practice

If you're going to directly connect a USB drive to your server, you will have some options about how you want to format your drive. 
We recommend USB drives connected to ROCK be formatted exFAT if you require compatibility, or EXT4 if you don't. 

Advantages of using exFAT include:
  1. Cross-platform compatibility (macOS, Windows, Linux)
  2. No real limits on drive size or file size
ROCK will also work with NTFS ,FAT32, and EXT2/3/4 drives, but if you are starting fresh with USB storage, our recommendation would be to use exFAT.

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