Portworx, a Redwood City, Calif.-based data storage software startup, emerged from stealth today with the introduction of its Docker-aware platform dubbed PWX Converged Infrastructure for Containers. A developer preview of the software is set for an August release.

Docker, the buzzed-about application containerization technology, is taking data centers by storm. And some technologies are eager to bring storage infrastructures into the fold. Earlier this month, Catalogic Softare announced an updated version of its version ECX copy data management with a Docker deployment option.

Today, in addition to unveiling PWX, the Portworx announced it had raised $8.5 million in an initial round of funding led by the Mayfield Fund. The startup’s founding members hail from Ocarina Networks – acquired by Dell in one of 2010’s biggest storage deals – as well as Microsoft, Citrix and F5.

Portworx PWX speeds the deployment of containerized applications by provisioning and optimizing storage in an automated manner. It’s a capability that allows businesses to incorporate Docker-powered workloads with cross-node data persistence into their production environments faster by eliminating custom scripts and reconfiguring an organization’s storage infrastructure.

In a recent blog post, Portworx cofounder Goutham Rao detailed his company’s approach to storage in the era of Docker-enabled, application-defined data centers.

“If an application needs storage capacity, it should be able to self-describe the capacity it needs, and dynamically and programmatically change the requirements,” he wrote. “Provisioning should not be ticket-based nor done by way of people getting involved. With Docker, an application’s environment, its libraries and dependencies are self-described and self-provisioned.”

PWX’s Elastic Storage Orchestrator automatically scales block storage and handles data movement between nodes to provide high availability and help keep application performance snappy. Self-service capabilities enable apps to scale and adapt to changing requirements with little in the way of IT intervention.

“Our goal was to build storage infrastructure for Docker containers from the ground up with a keen focus on the new requirements that containers and service-oriented architectures create,” said Murli Thirumale, CEO of Portworx, in a statement. “Building storage with container-level granularity ensures storage policies can be applied at the container level, enabling greater agility, application state consistency, high availability, rolling upgrades and high performance.”

Portworx PWX also represents an expansion of the Docker partner community, said Nick Stinemates, head of business development and technical alliances at Docker.

“Docker has been at the center of driving container adoption, both directly and with the help of ecosystem partners like Portworx,” he said in a statment. “Portworx’ multi-host storage provisioning solution, in combination with Docker’s volume solution, enables persistent data storage across multiple Docker hosts.”