The two leaders addressed the media ahead of talks at Fort de Brégançon, a medieval fortress and the President's retreat off the French Mediterranean coast.
But he said that phone conversations with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy had given him "cautious" grounds for optimism.
Their talks come just days before the French president hosts G7 talks in Biarritz.
Macron expressed "deep concern" over the military offensive led by the Syrian regime, backed by Moscow, in the region of Idlib, a rebel-controlled area in the northwest of the country.
While the G7 kicks off in Biarritz at the weekend, Putin will not attend after Russian Federation was suspended in 2014 over its annexation of Crimea from Ukraine.
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The deal outlined a truce in the northwestern region where air strikes and shelling by the government and its Russian ally has killed hundreds of people since April, many of them civilians.
Macron has taken a keen interest in brokering an end to the conflict and forging any progress would be a major feather in his cap as an worldwide statesman.
"The relation of France and Russian Federation, of Russia and the European Union is absolutely decisive", Macron said.
"We need to keep up our pressure, our energy to resolve this problem", he added.
"We would not refuse, he said, adding that "any contacts with our partners, in any format, are useful". We don't rule anything out".
Since mid-July, Moscow has seen a wave of rallies drawing tens of thousands onto the streets after opposition figures were barred from standing in September's local elections.
Macron said the comparison with France was inaccurate, since at least yellow vest protesters could stand in elections.
While initially, Putin ignored the comment, he was quick to retort after a follow-up question on the Moscow protests saying things were being handled in line with the law, but that he didn't want the situation to develop like in France.