A direct numerical simulation (DNS) was carried out for which random pressure fluctuations were forced at the inflow of the computational domain to initiate the laminar-turbulent transition process. The random forcing generated a broad spectrum of disturbances with respect to both frequency and azimuthal wavenumbers without any bias towards any of the known relevant nonlinear mechanisms (fundamental, subharmonic, oblique). The DNS results showed clear evidence that fundamental resonance is the dominant nonlinear mechanism. The time-averaged Stanton number contours indicated the formation of a pattern of streamwise “hot” streaks on the surface of the cone. Such hot streak patterns have previously been observed in experiments in the BAM6QT and in “controlled” breakdown DNS for flared and straight cones.