Experienceing severe lag

i hope this is the correct section for this question, and thanks to anyone in advance for their help. I would also like to preface my "essay" on my problem with sorry its so long, i wasn't sure what was or was not relevant so i tried to include all the pertinent information so i could receive the most accurate help.

I built my own computer and had it for a while my specs were
intell core 2 6600 2.4ghz
2gigs of ram
MSI P6N SLI Platinum LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 650i SLI ATX Intel Motherboard
GeForce 8800 GTX

My computer began overheating, i cleaned out the dust from the case and from the components, got a new case with 3 120mm fans and 1 80mm fan. Continuing to experience problems with the computer freezing. (the reason i indicate the overheating is i think that i may have damaged a component from prolonged use and overheating)

As time went on my computer began to freeze temporarily. I would be downloading something, and try to move the window, nothing would happen and everything would stop, the d/l at 40%(for example), but after maybe 30 sec i would be able to move the window and the downloading would have jumped to 65% indicating to me that the computer isnt actually freezing just the screem. Needless to say, any sort of gaming was out of the question as my computer would completely seize up forcing a manual restart. This condition became worse, with purple veins appearing on my screen accompanied by a flickering screen as my computer tried loading any process, computer became unusable.

I purchased a new video card suspecting this was the culprit 260GTX. I installed this component and the problem has (sort of) been fixed. the computer runs fine when using the internet, P2P programs, music, videos. When i try to play a game however, Left 4 Dead, it will load up just fine, however when entering a game i experience severe lag, my game will freeze, and then jump ahead. (i would also like to point out that with my previous setup, before the problem became a common occurrance, i ran L4D just fine) Do i need a new processor? a new motherboard? ram? i dont know what the problem is, and i prefer not to purchase a bunch of new pieces one by one till i fix it, as money is a concern having just spent $280 on the GTX260.
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More about experienceing severe
  1. Have you downloaded any temperature monitoring programs so you can confirm if it's a heating problem? If not, try that.

    Have you updated your video drivers?
  2. i am using speedfan, and my temperatures dropped significantly after installing the new video card, i am fairly certain its not a heating problem, i deleted the old video drivers, and installed the new ones
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