You'll probably want to get really familiar and comfortable with C. It may also be helpful to experiment with Linux drivers since you can browse all the existent code to see what other people are doing (although that may confuse you at first, specially if you're not comfortable with C). A lot of people try to dive right in without reading documentation, I'd recommend going over the documentation first, it might not make sense while you're reading it but when you finally dive in, things will start to make sense.
One thing you can do is take an existent driver from Linux and see if you can modify it to do something different. That should get you comfortable with it.
That's understandable, i tried googling around some too but didn't really find anything readymade either. I can think of two alternatives to writing your own source filter:
1. Extract your videos into some temporary files and play those from the file system, this can be a bit costy in both time and resource wise (you need time to extract the videos to temp files and you will need extra disk space for the videos) but i supose this is quite a straightforward solution. Alternatively you might try using a named pipe and specifying that as the source for the file reader filter, no idea if that would work or not, never tried, but i kinda suspect it wouldn't work.
2. Implement a "small" HTTP server in your application that can stream the video from your big file and try to render the stream with DirectShow like "http:\\localhost:12345\a.avi" or somesuch. This might be more work than just writing the filter though.
> The problem with computers is that they do what you tell them to do and not what you want them to do. <
> If it doesn't matter, it's antimatter.<
I already thought both of your solutions you suggest. The 1st is abandoned from the very beggining since the archive file is delivered in retail-DVD and as you can imagine the time needed to extract it in the hard disk is critical. The 2nd solution is also rejected, since this is a retail product and the configuration of end computer is unknown, any anti-virus or general other protection software may block my application to work as it expected. So I think a custom filter in my case is more than imperative.
Yes, the same as I told you before. You are not checking that you have read all the data from the client so you have no way of being sure that you have a valid image. You are using sizeof and lstrlen to find the length of the data, neither of which will give you a valid answer.
I suspect the error 87 should be ignored as you have not checked if the previous function was successful or not. You can validate that by calling SetLastError(0) before the SetIcon() call. You also say that when you set icon style to FALSE it does not display the icon; isn't that what it should do?