Hey I just tried using the OpenCV for the past few hours but I keep on failing.

I am a Windows 7 user with Visual Studio 2008.

I followed the instructions for OpenCV2.2 (whilst downloading the newest stable version 2.4)
did the CMAKE phase exactly the way it says .

Finaly I added the libraries and includes as showed ( except the folders detinations are different )
and tried using the example code

// OpenCV_Helloworld.cpp : Defines the entry point for the console application.
// Created for build/install tutorial, Microsoft Visual Studio and OpenCV 2.2.0

#include "stdAfx.h"

#include <cv.h>
#include <cxcore.h>
#include <highgui.h>

int _tmain(int argc, _TCHAR* argv[])
        // Open the file.
        IplImage *img = cvLoadImage("photo.jpg");
        if (!img) {
                printf("Error: Couldn't open the image file.\n");
                return 1;

        // Display the image.
        cvNamedWindow("Image:", CV_WINDOW_AUTOSIZE);
        cvShowImage("Image:", img);

        // Wait for the user to press a key in the GUI window.

        // Free the resources.

        return 0;

But I get the following errors:
fatal error C1083: Cannot open include file: 'stdAfx.h': No such file or directory
but thats not the worst because I read that this file isnt a must so I removed it and got this one:
fatal error C1083: Cannot open include file: 'opencv2/core/core_c.h': No such file or directory

kept doing so , removing includs and kept on getting the "cant open" errors
once I checked the opencv folders I found out there are hardly any files in the opencv2 folder

need an advice .
(prefered not to download an old version since there are less options)

Well I would suggest you to try http://opencv.org/
I guess willowgarage is an older link. And from what you have written ,seems that its an installation problem

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