This paper presents a comprehensive comparison between conventional (longitudinal flux) linear switched reluctance machines (CLSRMs) and transverse flux linear switched reluctance machines (TLSRMs) so as to enable engineers to choose a structure suitable for their applications. A commonly-used single-sided CLSRM and 4 different TLSRM structures are considered for the comparison. For a fair comparison of the 2 types of LSRMs, equal dimensions, including equal length and magnetomotive force, are applied as much as possible. The analytical approach and 3-dimensional finite element analysis (FEA) are employed to obtain the performance of these machines. It is proven analytically that the CLSRM has a higher force capability compared to TLSRMs by as much as 6 times under linear B-H characteristic operating points. The results are reinforced by the FEA-based performance results. Furthermore, the CLSRMs are simpler to construct, resulting in lower manufacturing cost and thus paving an easier path for their market acceptance than TLSRMs. These results make CLSRMs the structure of choice for linear-switched reluctance motors.