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Lens motor(inside the lens) could be damaged already. The D40x focusing system is dependent on the lens, just like any other Nikon Dx camera except for the ones that has built-in motor to its body, e.g. D90, D7000. Try a different lens, most likely it should work
The D40x works as SLRs have worked for half a century. You view and compose through the optical viewfinder. Nikon introduced the LiveView capability into their DSLRs with the D300 and D3, introduced well after the D40x. On the D40x, the monitor is for menus, settings, and review of previously taken photos. It cannot be used for shooting as on more recent cameras.
Sorry if that wasn't the answer you wanted to see, but there it is.
Set the shooting mode to one of the two remote modes. The quick-response remote mode fires the shutter when you press the button on the remote. The delayed remote mode gives you two seconds to hide the remote behind your back before firing the shutter.
Press the Info button. Use the direction keys to the shooting mode (along the right side, fifth from the top). Press OK. Use up/down to select the remote modes (the two at the bottom).
For full details, refer to the "Shooting Mode" section in the D40x manual.
Hi. No you can't shoot by viewing the LCD, only by using the eye-level viewfinder. Some SLR cameras have "live-view", which lets you use either the eye-level finder or the LCD. It really isn't a very good method of shooting with an SLR, as you first have to lock the mirror up, compose your shot, then drop the mirror back down. Using the eye-level finder also blocks out the bright light that makes the LCD difficult to use in sunlight. Hope this helps answer your question.