Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Using OpenCV with Visual Studio

Step1. CMake:

CMake is used to make (build) your own libraries from the OpenCV source files and not to use the pre-built libraries. This allows to take advantage of the most advanced technologies OpenCV integrates into their library. You should build the ALL_BUILD project for both of the Debug and Release modes. Then, build the INSTALL project for both of Debug and Release modes. This step will prepare the folder: C:\openCV_build\visual_studio_10\install\ for you. In this tutorial, I assume that the chosen CMake build binaries directory is: C:\openCV_build\visual_studio_10\ .


Step2. Integration with Visual Studio 10 Project:

You can do this step globally once on your machine, or you can make it per project. In this tutorial, I choose to add the OpenCV libraries locally (per project), not to always clump all of the projects in my machine with OpenCV information.

At this point, you need to configure the Visual Studio project, so it can locate OpenCV headers and libraries. Go to the Project Properties (ALT+F7), and once the new window shows up do the following:
  1. On the Configuration box, select All Configurations.
  2. Open Configuration Properties > C/C++ > General, and edit the field Additional Include Directories to add these 3 paths (for the headers):C:\openCV_build\visual_studio_10\install\include\opencv
  3. Note that include\opencv is for the C interface of OpenCV and include\opencv2 if for the C++ interface. We are also adding the folder include to prevent our build from being broken by some headers of the C interface that refer to C++ headers as opencv2\core.

  4. Then, add the path of the libraries on Configuration Properties > Linker > General, and on the Additional Library Directories field, add this: C:\openCV_build\visual_studio_10\install\x86\vc10\lib.

  5. Finally, according to the complexity and need of the desired application, add the libraries that you need from:

    So go to Configuration Properties > Linker > Input and add them:

Now, press F7 to Build Solution and you should see:
========== Build: 1 succeeded, 0 failed, 0 up-to-date, 0 skipped ========== .
To be able to execute the application you'll need to modify the PATH environment variable of your system to add the location of OpenCV's DLLs. Add this to end of PATH:
;C:\openCV_build\visual_studio_10\install\x86\vc10\bin .

In the above discussion, you can just add a new environment variable called OPENCV_DIR and set the path: C:\openCV_build\visual_studio_10\install to it. And like that you will use $(OPENCV_DIR)\include, instead of: C:\openCV_build\visual_studio_10\install\include .


Step3. Debugging Images:

Just download NativeViewer, then open as text:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 10.0\Common7\Packages\Debugger\autoexp.datto add the NativeViewer dll file path to it. In other words, under the [AutoExpand] section add the following line (modify the "E:\_PhD\Programs\NativeViewer_VS2010" with the link as in your machine):
cv::Mat=$ADDIN(E:\_PhD\Programs\NativeViewer_VS2010\NativeViewer_VS2010_v1.0.1\NativeViewer10.dll,CvMatViewer).You can also use Visual Studio 2012 or higher with Image Watch plug-in.

Like that, you will be able to see image during debugging as in the following image. Don't forget to hold down the Ctrl button before hovering over an image variable to see its image content.