I've been using the beta 2 for a while now, and it IS now shipping
as MAE 2.0. (Got my copy a few weeks ago.)
I think pricing is $599 list, but I have seen lower educational
prices. (sorry if I'm off a bit on that #).
Re: performance, I now use MAE as my Mac, now that I have an
Xterminal directly to our Sun. I don't have many complaints,
and there are many advantages in having the same filesystems
for Mac & UNIX. Performance on my SPARC 10 Model 50 is roughly
high II or low centris - roughly. Just fine for doing productivity
things. I leave the number crunching to the UNIX applications,
There is a demo at apple's ftp, but it's v 1.0 and is slower, is
a CPU hog and has limited networking. (A good reason to upgrade
your 1.0 to 2.0 if you're considering.)
MAE 2.0 is farily CPU efficient (about 7% CPU util while iconed)
and cranks to more when used. It does have a nice settable
autoslowdown feature, for those times when you're thinking, and
So in general, it's great if you're a UNIX user who wants to run
some of the popular Mac productivity applications, but don't have
a Mac. And for those people with a Mac also, the MAE still gives
you the nice integration.
For example, I recently was performing some automated testing using
a UNIX application. The data was saved to a UNIX textfile. I then
launched Excel, and within minutes I had some nice post processing
performed in your typical-easy-to-use Mac apps.
Well, hope that gives some info. Try out the v1.0 for starters.
Realize that v2.0 will be faster, give full Appletalk, have sound,
etc. and it may be the right choice for you.
Good luck & enjoy!