The passphrases generated by diceware naturally depend on the set of words used, the wordlists.

diceware comes with some wordlists out-of-the-box, that might be a good choice for usual private use.


We do – by default – not use the diceware standard wordlist, but the long EFF wordlist (see below), because it is more secure and more comfortable to use.

But the “original” list is included in diceware as well and you can pick it with the -w en_orig option. You should pick it when you use real dice as source of randomness.

Currently we provide the following lists:

  • en_securedrop (8192 words)

    We provide a hand-crafted en_securedrop wordlist provided by @Heartsucker. It contains 8,192 english words and phrases. This list is based on the diceware standard wordlist and extended to offer better memorizable words. Please see https://github.com/heartsucker/diceware for details. The name en_securedrop refers to the securedrop project.

  • en (8192 words)

    Apart from it we also provide the so-called 8k wordlist from Mr. Reinhold as published on http://diceware.com/. It also contains 8,192 english words and phrases and is something like the canonical wordlist for use with binary-geared entities like computers or nerds.

  • en_eff (7776 words, default)

    This is the long EFF wordlist as published by the Electronic Frontier Foundation in mid-2016 and used by default. They put real scientific effort into the creation of this list which might considerably ease the use of passphrases generated with it. When using real dice (or other six-based randomness generators) use is definitely recommended!

    Please note, that this is currently the only list, that provides the prefix property. That means it contains no word which is a prefix of another word. Lists without this property might provide a slightly decreased entropy.

  • en_orig (7776 words)

    This is the diceware standard wordlist as provided by Mr. Reinhold. Something like the canonical list in former times, there are now considerable alternatives.

You can pick another list with the -w or --wordlist option.

Add Own Wordlists

You can use any wordlist you like. Simply give the filename and it will be used:

$ diceware mywordlist.txt

You can even pipe-in dynamic wordlists. Just use the dash - as filename:

$ cat mywordgenerator.sh | diceware -

for instance.

Of course you have to give the filenames of your files with each call to diceware.

But, if you want to store a wordlist persistently, you can do so too.

The wordlists we offer for use with diceware are all stored in a single folder. The exact location is output by --help at the very end:

$ diceware --help
Wordlists are stored in /some/path/to/folder

Just put your own wordlists into this folder (here: /some/path/to/folder) and rename the file to something like wordlist_MY_SPECIAL_NAME.txt. Afterwards you can pick your wordlist by running:

$ diceware -w MY_SPECIAL_NAME

diceware will use this file of yours then to create a passphrase. Please note that diceware only accepts files that are named like:




I.e. we expect wordlist_ at the beginning and some filename extension like .txt at the end. Furthermore names must not contain funny characters. In fact we accept regular letters, dashes, numbers, and underscores only. Files that do not follow these naming convention are ignored.

A list of all available wordlist names can also be retrieved with --help. See the --wordlist explanation.

Plain Wordlists

Out of the box, diceware supports plain wordlists, PGP-signed wordlists, and numbered wordlists. Plain wordlists look like this:


Each line in such a file is considered a word of the wordlist. Empty lines are ignored.

Whitespaces are allowed if they are not at the beginning or end of a line, stripped off otherwise.

Numbered Wordlists

Numbered wordlists contain numbers in each line, telling a sequence of dice rolls like so:

11111    aterm
11112    anotherterm

diceware detects such lines and in this case extracts aterm and anotherterm as wordlist entries.

Apart from simple digits written next to each other, diceware also accepts numbers separated by dashes like this:

1-1-1-1-1   aterm
1-1-1-1-2   anotherterm

which is handy when working with wordlists for dice with more than 9 sides.

PGP-signed Wordlists

PGP-signed wordlists are wordlists (ordinary or numbered ones), that have been cryptographically signed with PGP or GPG. They look like this:

Hash: SHA512


Version: GnuPG v1


and are normally stored with the .asc filename extension. Signed wordlists can be verified to detect changes, although this is not automatically done by diceware.


Diceware does not automatically verify PGP-signed files.