ok, now i accept this is not the simplest of solutions but it may suit some people....
i've never had the need for AVR Studio before now but i want to write a tutorial for the Axon from the perspective of users using the bootloader and i can't be bothered porting the bootloader to Linux. (yes Admin, i finally opened my Axon....)
i'm actually in the process of installing AVR Studio on a virtual machine running on my Linux machine.
this approach would work on the Mac as well but you do need a copy of the OS that you want to install on your virtual machine.
so this is what i have so far...
1. download and install Sun's http://www.virtualbox.org/
(free software). this software makes a virtual PC that you can run in a window on top of MacOS, Linux or even windows if you'd rather install a virtual XP machine on your vista host.
2. install the guest OS onto the virtual machine. you will need a set of install media for this. i used a windows XP cd for this.
3. fire up your new virtual machine in a window, configure it how you like it.
4. install all those annoying windows only programs (like AVR Studio) without having to put up with windows for everything.
there are other alternatives to VirtualBox but i've never played with the others. i like how VirtualBox allows you to copy and paste between the 2 OSes as well as allowing file sharing.
it's also trivial to set up. the only stumbling block was the guest OS did not have access to the USB system without a little research on the internet.
only 6 mins of waiting for AVR Studio to download left....
picture attached of the sort of integration possible with VirtualBox running XP as guest on a Linux host.
i'll let you know how i find AVR Studio.