Time Machine backup from iCloud

Is iCloud backup in a proprietary format or can data be dragged away from the backup to be used?
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u587162Asked:
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Jackie ManConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Yes. JUST make sure you have selected the correct date of your backup folder.

When each backup is stored, a folder is created as is the date and timestamp of the backup. When you open this folder it will be a replica of your drive and all of your files will be current as of that backup, to restore a file you simply drag and drop the file from the backup drive to wherever you want it.

Source: http://www.amsys.co.uk/podcast/time-machine-part-2-recover-data/
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Jackie ManCommented:
It is not possible to do a drag and drop from iCloud backup to a local computer vis a browser as you will not see the backup file at all when you logon to www.icloud.com.

You need to install software like the one below.

https://www.imobie.com/support/retrieve-photos-from-icloud.htm

Or

You need to restore the whole iDevices from the iCloud after you have factory reseted it.
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u587162Author Commented:
Sorry the question is wrong.  I meant to ask if Time Machine backup....not iCloud backup...
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Jackie ManCommented:
How is the drive for Time Machine connected? via USB or WiFi or LAN (networked)?

If you use a networked backup disk like a Time Capsule or other NAS, then mounting its drive on your Mac, followed by opening the “.sparsebundle” disk image. This will mount the image in the Finder, where you can navigate to the desired backed up file.

Source: https://www.macissues.com/2014/04/14/how-to-restore-files-from-time-machine-manually/

In short, you need to make use of the Finder and you can do a drag and drop to your local drive.
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u587162Author Commented:
What I mean is, I use an external USB portable hard drive to run Time Machine.  When I go into time machine using Finder, it is as if all the folders are accessible for me to drag and drop or copy and paste without having to much else.  I didnt understand the .sparsebundle reference.
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Jackie ManCommented:
.sparsebundle is only applicable if your time machine is on a network.
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u587162Author Commented:
So to summarise what you are saying, so that I understand you properly:  If I am using Time Machine via a USB enabled external drive, I can drag and drop individual folders and files from the backup?  It is not necessary for me to restore the whole backup etc?
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