Ware, who lost his battle with brain cancer on Tuesday evening, made 43 appearances for Dale between 2000 and 2002.
He also counted Stoke, Stockport, Cardiff and Macclesfield among his former clubs.
A statement on Rochdale's official website read: "It is with regret the club announce the passing of former Rochdale player Paul Ware who sadly passed away on Tuesday evening, aged just 42.
"Paul, who had been suffering with cancer of the brain, made over 40 appearances for the Dale in a two-year spell that ended in 2002.
"Our thoughts and sincere condolences go out to Paul's family and friends."